What Happens If the Information on My Naturalization Certificate Is Incorrect?

Dealing with USCIS mistakes on the certificate you're given after being sworn in for citizenship.

Question

I became a U.S. citizen a week ago. However, when I tried to apply for a U.S. passport using my naturalization certificate, I realized that the date of birth USCIS put on my certificate is incorrect! How do I get a corrected naturalization certificate?

Answer

When someone receives a naturalization certificate at the conclusion of the citizenship oath ceremony, it's important to review it for accuracy and alert a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) official of any mistakes found there. However, in the excitement of the moment, it's not uncommon for people to fail to take a close enough look.

People who later discover an error on the naturalization certificate can send USCIS a request for a new one using Form N-565, Application for Replacement Naturalization/Citizenship Document.

This form is used for a variety of issues. An accurately prepared naturalization certificate should state the place of the person's application and the date and place of naturalization, and be signed (or stamped) by the Director of USCIS. There are also several pieces of personal information that must be present on a naturalization certificate:

  1. Name. (If you requested a name change on your N-400, your new name should be on your naturalization certificate.)
  2. Date of birth.
  3. Gender.
  4. Height.
  5. Country of former nationality.

If a USCIS signature is missing or if any personal or other information on the certificate is incorrect, you should submit Form N-565 to USCIS (along with your original naturalization certificate, which contains the mistake).

If the error is USCIS’s fault, you will not have to pay an application fee.

But if the error is your fault, perhaps because you provided incorrect information on your Form N-400, Application for Naturalization, or you failed to update this information prior to taking the naturalization oath, you will have to pay a filing fee. For the current USCIS fee, see the N-565 section of the USCIS website. Also see the USCIS Policy Manual for a summary of who owes a fee and 8 C.F.R. §338.5.

In Part 4 of Form N-565, explain why your information on the certificate is incorrect. You must also provide evidence of the correct information and why it was not your fault.

For an incorrect date of birth, submit copies of your birth certificate, driver’s license, and other official documents stating your birthday. If the error was not your fault, also include a copy of your signed Form N-400 application for citizenship showing that you provided USCIS with the correct date of birth.

You have two choices for filing your completed N-565: online (after creating an account with USCIS) or by mail, at the address provided on the USCIS site. Even if you file online, however, you will have to mail your original certificate and photos to the USCIS Service Center afterward.

Before sending anything to USCIS by mail, make a copy for yourself.

It can take several months for USCIS to process an N-565. If you need your naturalization certificate immediately (because you need to apply for a U.S. passport for upcoming travel, for example), include a letter requesting expedited service due to this necessity.

If you are filing an N-565 because of USCIS’s error, state that in your cover letter.

Once USCIS has received your application, you can use the USCIS Contact Center to check the status of your application and, if need be, make an expedite request.

Talk to a Lawyer

Need a lawyer? Start here.

How it Works

  1. Briefly tell us about your case
  2. Provide your contact information
  3. Choose attorneys to contact you
NEED IMMIGRATION HELP ?

Talk to an Immigration attorney.

We've helped 85 clients find attorneys today.

How It Works

  1. Briefly tell us about your case
  2. Provide your contact information
  3. Choose attorneys to contact you