Sep 23, 2004
I am hiv + green card holder. Can I still apply for U.S. citizenship?
| Response from Ms. Gabriel
If you have had legal permanent resident status (your green card) for five years (three years if you got your green card through marriage), you may apply to become a naturalized citizen of the United States. The benefits of citizenship include the right to vote, greater eligibility for many public benefits, and protection against deportation.
HIV+ applicants are eligible for citizenship, and there is no HIV test as part of the application process. Thus, your present HIV status should have no impact on your citizenship application.
However, there have been some isolated reports of Immigration officers asking about an applicant's HIV status or asking how the HIV was acquired, in an attempt to show that the person doesn't have the "good moral character" required for citizenship. You should contact an attorney experienced with citizenship application if you encounter this problem.
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