There are three ways that a person may become a citizen of the United States: birth, blood or naturalization. When a person is born in the United States they become a citizen by virtue of the Fourteenth Amendment. If they are born outside of the United States but have at least one American citizen parent, then they too may be granted American citizenship. If a person meets neither of these standards, they may apply for naturalization.
Naturalization is for individuals who have come legally into the United States and who meet a multitude of other requirements. It may take years for a Kentucky resident who does not have citizenship to obtain it; many individuals benefit from the support of immigration attorneys when they begin this important and life-changing undertaking.
Aside from physically being in the United States, a person who wishes to use naturalization to gain citizenship must show that they are an adult and that they are of good moral character. They may have to demonstrate that they have a basic understanding of spoken and written English, and that they will follow and uphold the Constitution and other founding principles of the nation.
Becoming a US citizen has major repercussions on an individual's life, in that they generally must give up their citizenship to their former home country. Once they become a citizen, however, they become entitled to the rights and privileges of citizenship under the government. Those rights include but are not limited to voting, the freedom to travel and the right to pass citizenship on to their children. More information about naturalization should be sought from legal professionals who work in this important field.