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How much time do I need in the US if I studied abroad with a US university program for a year and four days?

Los Angeles, CA |

I have a green card since 2008, was abroad for study one year and four days (2010-2011) and had a reentry permit. From Sept 2011 to January 2013, I did not leave the country. Left for 5.5 months and am back in the US now. According to what I have read staying abroad more than one calendar year disrupts the continuous residency requirement. Does that apply if I studied abroad through a US program and had a reentry permit? In that case do I need five years for the citizenship counting from 2011? and have to spend half of the time in the US? or do I only need four years?????
Thank you

Attorney Answers 3


  1. 4 years and one day from the time you reestablished your residency in 2011 you are eligible Naturalize despite disrupting your continuous presence. The rule is 2 years and one day if married to a U.S. citizen. Yes, this applies even if studying abroad through a U.S. program and even if you had a reentry permit. You must also meet the physical presence requirement, meaning you must be physically present in the U.S. for at least ½ of the 5 (or 3) year residence period immediately prior to applying to Naturalize. Best of luck.

    Kindly note that this posting is offered for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Remember, this site is akin to an internet blog. Do not rely on information here to make important decisions in your life. Make an appointment to meet with a licensed attorney in his or her office (or via Skype or phone) to obtain competent personal and professional guidance.


  2. Four years and 1 day after re-establishing your residence in the US.

    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.


  3. Four years and one day from the date you re-established residence. The fact that you had a re-entry permit or studied in a U.S. program does not preserve your presence. You will of course need to meet all other naturalization criteria.

    The information contained in this answer is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter. No recipients of content from this answer, clients or otherwise, should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any content included in the answer without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a licensed attorney. Provision of information on this website does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and The Law Offices of Grinberg & Segal, P.L.L.C., nor is it intended to do so.

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