Citizenship

We encourage and are here to assist as many residents who are eligible to apply for citizenship.  

Immigration laws, regulations, and policies are constantly changing. Anyone interested in applying for citizenship, or any immigration relief, should speak to an attorney. Call our office for a consultation on how the latest updates may affect your eligibility.  

Remote Services 

Due to concerns about COVID-19, our CARECEN building remains closed to the public but we are conducting fully remote legal services and can assist Monday-Friday through our hotline. If interested, please call our hotline for an appointment and leave a detailed message. 213-817-5248 (access to email, internet, a printer, and a scanner is helpful but not required) 

COST 

CARECEN’s citizenship services include free legal assistance, citizenship classes, and community workshops. To get a free phone consultation contact our citizenship hotline at 213-814-5248. Please leave a voice message, if no one answers. 

CARECEN does not charge for consultations, citizenship application preparation, or classes. Take advantage today and protect yourself through citizenship. CARECEN's citizenship legal services are FREE of charge to qualifying applicants 

LEGAL SERVICES  

  • Eligibility Consultations 
  • Naturalization form preparation (N-400) 
  • Requesting a fee waiver (I-912) 
  • Applying for a reduced fee (I-942) 
  • And more! 

LOCATIONS 

CARECEN is committed to making citizenship services accessible to all. We offer services at many different locations, dates, and times. Find out your nearest location by calling 213-814-5248! 

ON-SITE SERVICES ARE SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.   

In order to protect our staff and community in light of the Covid-19 (Coronavirus), CARECEN Is canceling all walk-in services until further notice. 

We are currently offering phone call and video call appointments at our offices in LA and Van Nuys. We also offer appointment-based citizenship services in Whittier.  

 City  Location  Hours  Contact 
Los Angeles 

2845 W. 7TH St. Los Angeles, CA 90005 *In-person services currently suspended 

By appointment Mon – Fri, 9–4 pm   Citizenship Hotline: 213-814-5248  
Van Nuys 

16501 Sherman Way, Suite 245 Van Nuys, CA 91406 

*In-person services currently suspended 

By appointment

Mon – Fri, 9 – 4 PM 

(818) 616-6019 
Whittier 

10750 Laurel Ave. 

Whittier CA 90605 

*In-person services currently suspended 

By appointment Tues from 

9 AM – 4 PM 

(562) 946-2425 

WORKSHOPS 

Due to Covid–19, CARECEN’s citizenship team is currently only offering Virtual workshops. We organize about one naturalization workshop per month. Naturalization workshop dates are subject to changes. If interested in receiving services through our virtual workshops please contact our Hotline to register and confirm your appointment at 213-814-5248. 

**Please keep in mind that if you are registered for a workshop, you will be contacted by one of our Legal Assistants. Because we are working remotely, access to email, internet, printer, and scanner is required 

FREE LEGAL SERVICES AT L.A. LIBRARIES 

We offer free legal services at Los Angeles Public Libraries. Click HERE for hours and locations. To make an appointment, please call 213-228-7390 or visit http://www.lapl.org/newamericans. 

FREE LEGAL SERVICES AT LOS ANGELES FAMILY CENTERS 

If you live in Los Angeles city and are low-income, you may qualify for comprehensive services that include free legal assistance. Click HERE for more information. 

VOLUNTEERS OPPORTUNITIES  

CARECEN welcomes volunteers with our citizenship team. If you are interested in helping community members apply for citizenship or study for the citizenship exam, please fill out a volunteer application HERE. 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS: 

Do I need to pay a filing fee? 

While U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) charges to process your application, if you receive public benefits such as Medi-Cal, food stamps, SSI, etc. (or if your household income is low), you may qualify for a fee waiver or a reduced fee. Most of our clients qualify for a complete fee waiver. 

Do I have to take the exam in English?  

If you have been a resident for at least 20 years and are 50+ years old, or have been a resident for at least 15 years and are 55+ years old, you may be allowed to bring an interpreter and to take the test in another language. 

How long does the naturalization process take?  

Application processing times vary and can sometimes take 1 year or more. At this time due to covid-19 processing time is taking longer than usual, estimate time can change depending on USCIS location processing your application.  

What are other benefits of citizenship? 

Only citizens vote in U.S. elections. A US citizen can petition for more family members than a lawful permanent resident can. US citizens can petition parents, married children, and siblings. Citizens also have access to certain public benefits available only to citizens, can travel with fewer restrictions, and have more participation opportunities in the political process. Residency is not always permanent.  Naturalization offers more security. 

What should I bring to my consultation? 

You should bring the following documents: 

  • Permanent Resident Card 
  • Social Security Card 
  • Birth certificate 
  • Marriage and Divorce certificates for you and any spouses 
  • ID or California License 
  • Passports that you have used to travel out of the US in the last 5 years. If your travel dates do not appear in your passport, write the dates on a sheet of paper and bring them to your appointment (this includes trips to Tijuana that were longer than 24 hours). 
  • If you have ever been arrested, please bring a final certified court disposition for all arrests or charges, even if the case was dismissed. Any other related documents. 
  • Proof of current Public Benefit(s), if any