Individuals who want to naturalize and become U.S. citizens must demonstrate knowledge of the English language, U.S. history and civics. Every year, thousands of disabled people seek exemptions from this requirement. To do this, doctors must document each applicant’s disability by filling out a form provided by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services—Form N-648. Every year, IPU successfully represents hundreds of disabled applicants seeking exemptions through the use of Form N- 648, allowing them to become citizens.

Revisions made to Form N-648 in November 2008 have resulted in the exclusion of many qualified applicants from the benefits of citizenship. Among the chief problems with the new version is the overly complex set of questions posed to doctors. In response to these revisions, HIAS has led a campaign to simplify the form. NYLAG, along with other community based organizations, has joined this campaign.