The N-600K form is used
to apply for naturalization of a child who regularly resides outside of the U.S.
with his U.S. citizen parent. For a child to be eligible for citizenship under
the N-600K, they must: be under 18 years old, have at least one U.S. citizen
parent, be residing outside of the U.S., be temporarily and legally present in
the United States to complete the N-600K process for an interview, and have a U.S.
citizen parent who has resided in the U.S. for five years or more. The form
must be filed by the U.S. citizen parent on behalf the child. If the U.S.
citizen parent does not meet the residency requirement or if they are deceased,
a U.S. citizen grandparent may file for the child. Proof of residence is
required to verify that the U.S. citizen parent or grandparent has lived in the
U.S. for at least five years. All forms and supporting documents and filing fee
will be mailed to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) at the
address designated on the Application
for Citizenship and Issuance of Certificate Under Section 322 | USCIS. If your N-600K application is approved by USCIS, your
child will be able to receive a Certificate of Citizenship at the interview.
The criteria listed below
(A – C) must be met for adopted child to be eligible for naturalization under
Section 322 of the Immigration and Naturalization Act (INA). Section D explains
the procedure to file the N-600-K form.
Orphans Adopted Abroad Who Continue to Live Abroad
with their U.S. Citizen Parents
A. Typical scenarios
would be U.S. families living abroad, such as dual citizens, business people,
and foreign missionaries. U.S. military members on orders are exempt and can
use the Section 320 procedure.
B. Applicable Law: Child
Citizenship Act of 2000 (CCA), Pub. L. No. 106-395, 114 Stat.1631, Section 322
of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952
C. Families may use
provisions of Section 322 of the INA if they meet the following criteria:
1. U.S. citizen parent
or grandparent, who was physically present in the U.S. or outlying possessions
for at least five years, at least two of which were after the age of 14;
is under age 18 by the time the entire process is completed;
3. Child is residing
outside the U.S. in the legal and physical custody of the applying parent;
4. Child temporarily
present in the U.S. pursuant to a lawful admission and is maintaining such
lawful status; AND
5. Child must meet
“orphan” definition or “adopted child” or “adoptable child” definition.
Section 322 Procedure:
1. U.S. citizen parent
or grandparent or legal counsel files form N-600-K with supporting
documentation and filing fee at the address listed on the form at Application for Citizenship and Issuance of
Certificate Under Section 322 | USCIS.
The interview can take
place at any USCIS field office (in the U.S., not abroad);
adjudication within 5 to 6 months—if approved, the applicant receives an
approval notice on Form G-56. The time frame depends on which field office is
selected for the interview. Some offices
have much longer processing times.
3. U.S. citizen parent
takes approval notice to nearest U.S. Consulate or Embassy, which issues B-2
visa for child. If the child already has a B-2 visa, the step can be omitted.
It’s quicker if the child already has a B-2 visitor’s visa.
4. U.S. citizen parent
and child come to the USCIS district office that issued approval for interview.
5. Final approval issued
at interview, oath administered to child, and Certificate of Citizenship
6. Practice Tip: Beware of age-outs, because the oath must be administered before the child turns 18.
The wrong person signs
Who should sign the
form? The U.S. citizen parent should sign the form, as long as they meet the
physical presence requirements. The parent must have been living in the U.S. or
an outlying territory for at least 5 years, two of which were after the age of
fourteen. If the parent does not meet this requirement, a U.S. citizen
grandparent may sign instead. A U.S. citizen grandparent is also permitted to
sign if the U.S. citizen parent is deceased.
Wrong filing fee
submitted or check not made out correctly to U.S. Department of Homeland
No passport style
photos submitted (Tip, have them taken abroad and then emailed to a U.S. photo
service where they are printed out and the attorney mails them with the completed
application and filing fee)
Filing too early.
If the child does not
qualify as an “orphan” or “Hague adoptee”, you must wait until the adoption is
finalized, plus two years of legal custody and two years of joint residence.
These two-year periods may run concurrently or overlap but you can't file until
the last time frame is completed.
of two years of physical custody.
It is necessary to
track all the addresses and provide the lease or rental agreement plus
documents showing that address, the child's name, and the adoptive parents'
names on them.
of the U.S. citizen parent's residence in the U.S. for five years.
Usually high school
and/or college transcripts can solve this issue.
Not using Fed-Ex or UPS
to mail your form.
o These delivery services are more secure and will give you proof of receipt.
What to Expect After Filing
Once you have filed your application, USCIS will send you an I-797 receipt notice. There will be a case number on the receipt and you should save this number. Anytime you inquire about your case, you will reference this case number. After USCIS reviews your N-600K application, they will schedule an interview for your child. To be present at the interview, the child must have proof of lawful entry to the United States. Usually, form I-94 (Lawful Record of Admission) is submitted as proof. Lastly, if everything is in order, USCIS will approve the child to receive a Certificate of Citizenship at the interview.
Assistance from Our Office
article provides general information which should be verified at Application for Citizenship and Issuance of
Certificate Under Section 322 | USCIS.
It cannot take the place of individual legal
advice about your situation and does not create a client-lawyer relationship.
To establish that relationship, please contact us to schedule your consultation
Adoption—it’s Not Over until PROOF of Citizenship is Obtained”, Prepared by
Karen Stoutamyer Law, Esquire, © 2017, Seminar https://www.alllaw.com/articles/nolo/us-immigration/filing-citizenship-parentage-n-600k-application.html
by Alyssa Howes, Intern, and Karen S. Law, Esquire, of Law Offices of Karen S.
Law, PLC © 2021
This web site and the information contained within have been prepared by Law Offices of Karen S. Law, PLC for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. This information is not intended to create, nor does receipt of it constitute an attorney-client relationship. Viewers should not act upon information found here without seeking legal counsel. All photographs shown on this blog are depictions of clients and are not actual clients of this law firm. Copyright Karen S. Law, 2021.