I've been trying to get clarification on whether it is per calendar year or per trip when leaving the US (abroad) as a LPR or green card holder. Can someone help clarify?
I've found one or two legal resources saying "calendar year" but it seems either difficult to find to find the answer (two lawyers isn't a lot) OR it's intentionally vague.
I was out of the country last year from September 2016 to February 2017 (so it cuts into two years) and I need to take another trip home for 3 weeks in May (2017)
You should directly consult with an immigration attorney before leaving
JUST BECAUSE I ANSWER YOUR QUESTION, THAT DOES NOT MAKE YOU MY CLIENT.
I presume you are talking about the 180 day rule that relates to eligiblity for citizenship. Here is the rule:
On the day you plan to file for citizenship - look back 5 years (or 3 years if you are subject to the 3 year rule). If during those 5 years you had any single trip that kept you outside the U.S. for 180 days or longer, you broke the count for citizenship and your 5 year count (or 3 year) will start over with day 1 on the day you returned to the U.S.
It is not counted by calendar year. You should consider hiring counsel for your application.
An absence of 180 days, or more, on a single trip 'resets' your 'clock' for naturalization.
An absence of 1 year makes you lose your status ass a resident.
No, we don't use 'calendar years' .. we use 180 and/or 365.
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It's not per calendar year but per trip. An absence of more than 6 months create a rebuttable presumption that you broke your continuous residence in the US. In this case it does not appear to have happened because your trip from September 2016 to February 2017 was only for 5 months. Even if the trip had been for over 6 months you can still show evidence that it was not your intention to break your continuous residence in the United States. They way you would that is showing that you have enough ties with the US such as a job, family, home, bank accounts, etc. and that you did not obtained a job outside of the United States. Consult with an experienced immigration lawyer to evaluate your eligibility for naturalization.
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