N-400 for Elderly Grandfather

N-400 for Elderly Grandfather

Applicant: Walter
Country/Region: Taiwan, China
Case Type:
N-400, Naturalization
8 – 12 months

  • Mr. Walter is of advanced age and cognition
  • Need an interpreter to take the Naturalization test
  • Unfamiliar with the process and limited knowledge about it



At 73-years-old Walter was well beyond retirement age, but he still spent his days at the family restaurant he’d started. Nowadays, he mostly sits in the booth in the far corner and sips his tea. He enjoys watching his granddaughter help her mother run the register and clean the tables.

He’d been married to the same woman for more than half his life, and she’d always wanted him to take his naturalization test. When he was younger he’d know many people from Taiwan, like himself, who had attempted the test and failed. They’d been unable to speak English well enough to pass the test or they failed the U.S history and government (civics) portion. Walter didn’t want the embarrassment of failing to stain his reputation in the community so he never took it. Still, his wife and daughters persisted in nagging him about the test. They said it would be an inspiration to his grandchildren to have their “ah gong” become an official U.S. citizen. Deciding to take the test the next step was for him to get legal advice.



Walter’s eldest daughter contacted Tsang and Associates seeking advice. The firm was able to inform her there was an exemption her father would likely qualify for. One of the requirements for becoming a U.S. citizen is to take the naturalization test to demonstrate the ability to read, write, and speak basic English and have a basic knowledge of U.S. history and government (civics).

However, as Tsang and Associates explained, a petitioner is not required to take the English language test if, at the time of filing Form N-400, they are 50 years of age or older and have lived in the United States as a permanent resident for periods totaling at least 20 years.

Walter’s daughter said she had the documentation to prove her father’s age and how long he’d lived in the U.S. Tsang and Associates helped her prepare the documents for filing with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and provided interpreter services.



Walter’s exemption from having to take the English language test was accepted. However, he’s still required to pass the U.S. history and government (civics) test. The good news is that he can take that test in the language of his choice. His zah boh sun is helping him study and they are excited to see where the future takes him.