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A Journey to Citizenship: Overcoming Barriers for Rex

Rex was born in the Marshall Islands in 1994. When he was just seven months old, a loving San Francisco couple adopted him, welcoming him into their family with open arms. Shortly after starting school, Rex’s parents realized he faced unique challenges, ultimately leading to a diagnosis of severe autism. Rex’s condition made traditional schooling impossible.

Years later, as an adult, Rex obtained his lawful permanent residency at age 19. His parents longed to help him take the next step toward full citizenship but faced numerous hurdles in the naturalization process. That’s when they reached out to APILO for assistance.

Understanding Rex’s disabilities, API Legal Outreach immigration attorney, Nancy Hing Wong, immediately went to work. She secured a filing fee waiver, eliminating a financial burden. Additionally, she obtained waivers for the biometrics appointment and the standard citizenship test, recognizing Rex’s limitations. Counsel also coordinated a compassionate home visit with USCIS, ensuring a comfortable and accessible interview environment within Rex’s long-term care facility.

This personalized approach culminated in a remarkable victory. On a Thursday, a USCIS officer visited Rex; by Saturday, his parents held his naturalization certificate in their hands. Rex was now a U.S. citizen, opening doors to life-changing benefits like Supplemental Security Income, granting him a path toward greater independence.

If you or anyone you know is in need of legal assistance for the naturalization process, please feel free to get in touch with us or visit an upcoming clinic

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Founded in 1975, the mission of API Legal Outreach is to provide culturally competent and linguistically appropriate legal representation, social services, and advocacy for the most marginalized segments of the community including low-income women, seniors, recent immigrants, and youth.

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1121 Missio​n St.
​San Francisco, CA 94103


(T) 415.567.6255
(F) 415.567.6248

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​Oakland, CA 94607


(T) 510.251.2846
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