During a naturalization interview, you must take a civics test and an English test. For some, the English test may seem daunting because you have to demonstrate an understanding of English and the ability to write, speak and read basic English.
According to the USCIS, you may qualify if you feel you require an exemption from the English portion of the test.
Exceptions based on age
For exceptions based on age, you do not have to take the English test, but you still have to take the civics test. However, you can take the civics test in your native language.
The first exemption is for people over the age of 50. If you are over 50 and have lived as a permanent resident for 20 years, you do not have to take the English test. Likewise, you do not have to take the test if you are over 55 and have been a resident for 15 years. These exceptions are the 50/20 and 55/15 exceptions.
Suppose you happen to be 65 or older and have stayed a resident for over 20 years when you file for naturalization. In that case, the government may give you special considerations regarding the civics test.
Exceptions based on mental impairment
If you or a loved one has a physical or developmental disability or mental impairment, he or she may have difficulty completing the English and civics naturalization tests. In this case, you can submit a Form N-648, Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions. To complete the form, you need to have a clinical psychologist, osteopathic or licensed medical doctor.
In addition to exceptions to the English portion of the test, various exceptions are granted to people when becoming naturalized citizens.