Washington DC

AU received a complaint from a man seeking a modified Oath of Allegiance for Naturalized Citizens because he objected to swearing "so help me God." Despite several written requests to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), when he appeared at his swearing-in ceremony, he was not given the option of an alternative oath and was removed from the ceremony. He then met with two USCIS officials, who hinted that his application would be reviewed again and potentially denied as a result of his refusal to take the standard oath. AU wrote a letter to USCIS officials reminding them that federal regulations require that persons who object to the religious nature of the Oath of Allegiance be allowed to affirm an alternative oath without a religious component. USCIS did not respond to the first letter or schedule a new ceremony, so AU followed up with a second letter in January 2010. Two days after the second letter was sent, our complainant was contacted by USCIS and offered a new swearing-in ceremony with the modified oath.