What was the significance of the court case "Schneider v Rusk"?

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The court case of Schneider v. Rusk is a case heard in the Supreme Court which dealt with the removal of citizenship from Angelika Schneider who came to America with her parents from Germany as a child. When she reached the age of sixteen, she was afforded citizenship because her parents had become naturalized citizens. After she graduated from college, Angelika returned to Germany and remained there for three years. But, when she returned to the United States, she was informed that she no longer had her citizenship. The State Department invoked the Immigration and Nationality Act, an act that removed the citizenship of any naturalized citizen in the U.S. who went back to his or her country of birth and stayed there for at least three years. 

Schneider took her case to the Supreme Court, which ruled in her favor: 

Naturalized U.S. citizens have the right to return to and reside in their native countries, and retain their U.S. citizenship, even if they never return to the United States.

This was a very significant decision for all naturalized citizens in the U.S. as their American citizenship is protected if they return to their homeland.