Immigration Law 101: Birthright Citizenship Explained

You’ve probably heard that if a baby is born in the United States, the baby is automatically a U.S. citizen, regardless of the parents’ citizenship or immigration status. This is due to a practice called “birthright citizenship,” which can also be referred to as “jus soli.” This has been the practice in the United States for as long as it has been a country. We also use “jus sanguinis” or bloodright when we grant citizenship to the children of American citizens who happen to be born while their parents are abroad. 

Because birthright citizenship makes it possible for undocumented immigrants to have children who are born U.S. citizens, there are those who criticize the laws that make this possible. They understand that citizens are able to petition for immediate family members, such as parents, and look at birthright citizenship as a way that people who are in the United States illegally can get around the system. They say that this is not how the law was intended to be used. Others argue that birthright citizenship is a part of our constitution. So far, most court cases have taken the side of birthright citizenship. Legally, it has withstood challenge after challenge over the last several decades.  

If you are an immigrant and you have had a child since arriving in the United States, your child is a U.S. citizen, regardless of any argument anyone might make. If anyone in any official capacity tries to tell you otherwise, you can cite the Fourteenth Amendment or, better yet, direct them to your Immigration attorney, who will happily fight to ensure that your child is able to enjoy all the benefits of his or her U.S. citizenship. 

If you are dealing with this or any other immigration law or family law matter, the Zafiro Law team is here to help. We have extensive experience in both family law and immigration law matters and would love to partner with you to protect your rights. We provide high-quality, effective, and affordable legal counsel that we hope will meet all of your immigration and family law needs. If you’re ready to discuss your case, we would love to hear from you. Give us a call at (206) 547-9906 to schedule a consultation so we can discuss your legal options.

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Zafiro Law

As an attorney, I am passionate about helping my clients achieve peace of mind in navigating the complex areas of family law and immigration law. Your case will get my full and dedicated attention—whether you are seeking to navigate the complexities of your family law matter or overcome the challenges of your immigration law case.

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