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How much can I stay out side the US without effecting my Green Card and new Naturalization application?

Porter, TX |


I am a US permanent resident, and after five years I applied for a Naturalization and it was denied because I stayed out of the US for one year and 18 days... They said that I can apply in August 2014......

Now, my question is that how many months can I stay out the US? As I am planning to go to my native country and spend less than 6 months then return to US for only one month and again go back to my native for less than 6 months, noting that I have already spent more than 2 years in the US (from the 2 year and a half that i should spend in the US during a 5 years period).

Also, I have a question .... my husband has a b1/b2 visa if I applied form I-130 is that gonna effect his visa, (he is already outside the US).... Or there is anyway that I can bring him to US with authority to work (we have two children with US citizenship)??

Attorney Answers 3

  1. Best answer

    You appear to have 'learned your lesson' and will be wise to never leave the US for more than 6 months at a time again.

    But, be warned, a person can be deemed to have abandoned their US residence even if they are gone for less than 6 months at a time ... thus, your less-than-6 out of the US, 1-in the US, less-than-6 out of the US could be a problem

    Have a private consultation with an immigration attorney ... you can discuss how to properly submit an I-130 at the same time.

    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. Also, keep in mind that this is an INTERNET BLOG. You should not rely on anything you read here to make decisions which impact on your life. Meet with an attorney, via Skype, or in person, to obtain competent personal and professional guidance.

  2. You have a lot going on. First, to naturalize, you must be physically present in the U.S. for at least half of the five year time requirement. So do the math on your trips and how they will effect your 2014 application. Second, you must maintain a continuous residence. This is different from physical presence. You must live here. The purpose of the permanent resident status is in the words. You must permanent reside here. There is a rebuttable presumption that you've abandoned your residence (for natz purposes) if you are outside the U.S. for 6-12 months. For natz purposes and as you've found out, more than one year terminates the accrual of the continuous residence. You may want to figure out what is in your family's best interest regarding your status and time abroad and plan accordingly.

  3. Don't represent yourself. Hire a lawyer as soon as possible. Good luck!

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