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Can they take away green card for staying over 6 months outside US?

Atlanta, GA |

My friend is a green card holder who spent over 6 months out of the us. he was denied citizenship because he was 3 months shy of 5 yr requirement. but was warned not to apply again til a yr time because he broke continuous resident. he is now worried that they will try n card take away his green card. can they do that?

Attorney Answers 5


  1. He will not lose his green card because he was denied citizenship for having broken his continuous residence.


  2. For one such trip, no. For many such trips, yes.

    You should retain an experienced immigration lawyer, whether myself or one of my colleagues, to review all the facts, advise you, and handle the case.

    J Charles Ferrari Eng & Nishimura 213.622.2255 The statement above is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice, as not all the facts are known. You should retain an attorney to review all the facts specific to your case in order to receive advise specific to your case. The statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship. Answers on Avvo can only be general ones, as specific answers would require knowledge of all the facts. As such, they may or may not apply to the question.


  3. 1 trip of 6 months ... not a problem (other than for naturalization).

    Multiple trips .. it is getting to be a problem.

    Gone for more than 12 months ... now they can cut the card in 1/2.

    PROFESSOR OF IMMIGRATION LAW for over 10 years -- This blog posting is offered for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.


  4. At six months out of the US, a rebuttable presumption arises that you intended to abandon your residence. It sounds like he rebutted this presumption. At one year out of the US, it is presumed that you abandoned your status.

    Myron R. Morales, Attorney
    Morales PLLC
    info@moralespllc.com


  5. As you can see from the previous responses, even a single six-month absence can create a presumption that a person has abandoned residence in the U.S. and therefore has abandoned his/her Permanent Resident status. If the absence is less than one year in duration, however, he/she may rebut that presumption by providing documentary evidence that residence was maintained in the U.S. despite the long absence. There are some circumstances in which a person may get advanced permission to be outside of the U.S. for a long time without risk of being deemed to have abandoned residence (this applies, for example, to people employed by certain companies who become stationed abroad, for some people who work for the government, for some missionaries, etc.).

    Your friend apparently miscalculated the time within which he was eligible to file a petition for naturalization. It would be wise to engage an immigration attorney to address both issues dealing with extended absences and with proper calculation of filing times.

    [Note: Consistent with Avvo policy, this communication is intended as general information and not specific legal advice, and this communication does not create an attorney-client relationship.]

    David N. Soloway
    Frazier, Soloway, Poorak & Kennedy, P.C.
    1800 Century Place, Suite 100
    Atlanta, Georgia 30345 www.fspklaw.com
    404-320-7000 * 1-877-232-5352 * dsoloway@fspklaw.com

    [Note: Consistent with Avvo policy, this communication is intended as general information and not specific legal advice, and this communication does not create an attorney-client relationship.] David N. Soloway Frazier, Soloway & Poorak, P.C. 1800 Century Place, Suite 100 Atlanta, Georgia 30345 www.fspklaw.com 404-320-7000 * 1-877-232-5352 * dsoloway@fspklaw.com

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