Selective service June 11, 2012 ^
Immigration and US Citizenship News
By Kieran C. O’Sullivan – Immigration Counselor
Email me your immigration query or a topic you would like us to cover today: Kieran@ipcboston.org
Record turnout at IPC clinic
Last Tuesday night saw a record turnout for our legal clinic at the Banshee in Dorchester. Immigrants from all over Ireland attended with questions on visas, legal residency through marriage, and one person had been detained by US immigration and had queries on that subject. “This was the largest number we’ve seen since we began these clinics six years ago,” said IPC board attorney Dan Harrington who along with attorney Chris Lavery provided each attendee a free one to one consultation. We were lucky to have both attorneys Chris and Dan present along with our regular volunteers Neil Hurley and Sheila Gleeson.
Selective Service for young legal residents
One attendee had a selective service issue. Selective Service Registration is the government’s way of keeping a database of young men who may be called on in case of draft or national emergency. You are required to register with Selective Service if you are between the age of 18 and 26. Failure to do so can result in penalties.
It will also affect your efforts to become a US citizen. A naturalization applicant who was required to register with the Selective Service and who knowingly or willfully failed to register cannot be considered a person of good moral character for naturalization purposes. Most persons of draft age are told of the need to register at the time of their adjustment of status to permanent residence or at consular interviews overseas.
Selective Service and the US Citizenship application form
The application for US citizenship is Form N-400 ask specific questions on Selective Service. If the applicant has registered, he must include his selective service number and the date he was registered. If the applicant has failed to register, you should consider attending our next legal clinic on July
A naturalization applicant who was required to register with the Selective Service and who knowingly or willfully failed to register cannot be considered a person of good moral character for naturalization purposes. If the immigrant has not yet turned 26 years of age, the Selective Service might accept a late registration from the immigrant.
Once you turn 26, however, you cannot register. In that case, the burden is on you to demonstrate that you did not knowingly and willfully fail to register. In practice, the naturalization applicant will find it difficult to establish that he did not knowingly or willfully fail to register with the Selective Service. In these cases, most have to wait until turning 31, and if he has accrued five years of good moral character he may then be eligible to file.
Disclaimer: Please note that the information contained in it is provided to inform generally, and is not intended as a substitute for individual advice. Immigration law is subject to frequent changes and individual circumstances can affect the application of certain legal provisions. For individual legal advice, please contact the Irish Pastoral Centre directly regarding upcoming legal clinics or consultation with an immigration attorney.
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