Aspirants who apply for US citizenship through naturalization must establish an understanding of English language and also ability to speak, write and read words in regular usage. Knowledge and understanding of fundamentals of the history, principles and form of US governments is a must. Both together are called the English and civics requirements for naturalization.
Applicants seeking an exception from the English and US civics test requirements after applying for US citizenship based on physical or age-linked disability or mental deficiency which lasted for more than a year must submit the Form N-648 according to USCIS regulations. A licensed medical doctor or licensed clinical psychologist must complete this medical certification for disability exceptions and be submitted along application for naturalization, Form N-400. The USCIS will determine if applicant is entitled for concession to the requirements using this Form N-648.
Who cannot use Form N-648?
Under the Rehabilitation act of 1973 reasonable adjustments are provided and applicants who can satisfy them need not submit the form. Among other factors the reasonable adjustments include sign language interpreters, time extension for testing and off site testing. Illiteracy is not a valid reason to request for exception from civics and English requirement of naturalization using Form N-648. The applicant should indicate the adjustment he/she is requesting for in the Part3 of the Form N-400 while applying for US Citizenship.
Certification of Form N-648
Authority to certify the Form N-648 is only for medical doctors, doctors of osteopathy, or clinical psychologists licensed to practice in US including territories like Guam, Puerto Rico, territories of CNMI and the Virgin Islands. Assistance for form completion can be provided by the staff of the medical practice but the accuracy of form’s content is the medical professional’s responsibility.
The licensed medical professional must certify all parts of the Form N-648 except for the applicant attestation and interpreter’s certification after an in-person examination of the applicant. USCIS doesn’t accept incomplete forms so all the items or questions must be fully and accurately answered. Common terminology and not abbreviation should be used to fill in the form easily understood by a person without medical training. For legibility purposes it’s always recommended to use the electronic form available online. As required on the form the detailed assessment of the applicant’s physical and developmental disability or mental impairment should be provided by the medical professional and also attach medical diagnostic report or records as support documents.
Implication of false representations
Under the penalty of perjury the medical professional and the applicant both are required to attest the Form N-648, with no filing fee, submitted along Form N-400 to apply for US citizenship. The United States Code provides that whoever knowingly makes under oath or as permitted under section 1746 of Title 28 of United States code under the penalty of perjury knowingly subscribes as true any false statement with respect to a material fact in any application, affidavit or other documents required by the immigration law or regulations prescribed or knowingly presents any such document will be fined or imprisoned for not more than 10 years or both. Also under the Title 18 of the US code Section 247 C of the Immigration and Nationality Act and title 8 of US code section 1324c provides for penalty if any false information is included in the information provided by either the applicant or the medical professional.