Only citizens can vote in federal elections. Most states also restrict the right to vote, in most elections, to U.S. citizens.
- Serve on a Jury
Only U.S. citizens can serve on a federal jury. Most states also restrict jury service to U.S. citizens. Serving on a jury is an important responsibility for U.S. citizens.
- Travel with a U.S. passport
A U.S. passport enables you to get assistance from the U.S. government when overseas, if necessary.
- Bring family members to the U.S.
U.S. citizens generally get priority when petitioning to bring family members permanently to this country.
- Obtain citizenship for children under 18 years of age
In most cases, a child born abroad to a U.S. citizen is automatically a U.S. citizen.
- Apply for federal jobs
Certain jobs with government agencies require U.S. citizenship.
- Become an elected official
Only citizens can run for federal office (U.S. Senate or House of Representatives) and for most state and local offices.
- Keep your residency
A U.S. citizen’s right to remain in the United States cannot be taken away.
- Become eligible for federal grants and scholarships
Many financial aid grants, including college scholarships and funds given by the government for specific purposes, are available only to U.S. citizens.
- Obtain government benefits
Some government benefits are available only to U.S. citizens.