An applicant for naturalization shall make and file with the Attorney General a sworn application in writing, signed by the applicant in the applicant’s own handwriting if physically able to write, which application shall be on a form prescribed by the Attorney General and shall include averments of all facts which in the opinion of the Attorney General may be material to the applicant’s naturalization, and required to be proved under this subchapter. In the case of an applicant subject to a requirement of continuous residence under section 1427(a) or 1430(a) of this title, the application for naturalization may be filed up to 3 months before the date the applicant would first otherwise meet such continuous residence requirement.
An alien over 18 years of age who is residing in the United States pursuant to a lawful admission for permanent residence may file with the Attorney General a declaration of intention to become a citizen of the United States. Such a declaration shall be filed in duplicate and in a form prescribed by the Attorney General and shall be accompanied by an application prescribed and approved by the Attorney General. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed as requiring any such alien to make and file a declaration of intention as a condition precedent to filing an application for naturalization nor shall any such declaration of intention be regarded as conferring or having conferred upon any such alien United States citizenship or nationality or the right to United States citizenship or nationality, nor shall such declaration be regarded as evidence of such alien’s lawful admission for permanent residence in any proceeding, action, or matter arising under this chapter or any other Act.