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Citizenship eligibility and stay outside if US for more then 6 months

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  • Citizenship eligibility and stay outside if US for more then 6 months

    Hello All

    I have this very uncommon situation , I have one of my relatives who came to US on family based Green Card five years back. They had to go outside of USA three years back and their overseas stay was extended to 8 months (continuous)

    I know one cannot apply for citizenship if you have traveled outside of USA and stayed more than 6 months in one single visit in last five years.

    Would like to know, if they cannot apply for citizenship at the end of 5 years, than when can they actually apply ? I heard Some people say that the citizenship application will need to be delayed by number of days you were outside of US in that single stay and others say your counter for 5 years is reset the day you came back from your extended visit outside US , so they need to now wait 5 more years , since the day they came back to USA.

    Looking for how the 6 months of continuous stay outside effects Citizenship application date. They are neither married to US citizen nor do they serve in military or any other US government departments.

    Looking advise from experts and people who had gone through similar experiences.

    Sincerely
    Last edited by mast; 24th April 2010, 01:55 PM.

  • #2
    Did they have any US residency ties during the 8 month stay outside? An 8 month trip does not automatically break continuous residency. The applicant is given the opportunity to prove residency ties for trips more than 6 months but less than 12 months.
    Sent N-400 7/28/07
    PD 7/27/07
    Check cashed 12/5/07
    NOA 12/7/07
    FP notice 1/4/08 (received 1/10/08 )
    FP Date 1/30/08 (walk in done on 1/26/08 Charlotte)
    IL: 6/10/08
    ID: 8/28/08 (Durham DO) Passed!
    OL: 9/23/08
    OD: 10/06/08
    PP: 10/21/08 (applied)
    PP: 11/1/08 (received)
    ------------------------------------------

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    • #3
      When you say residency ties , do you mean reasons for staying abroad for more then 6 months? yes there were resaons for them staying more then 6 months. But do we know what can be considered as valid reasons or not?

      looking for experiences and sample application if any one had success pleading for consideration.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by mast View Post
        I know one cannot apply for citizenship if you have traveled outside of USA and stayed more than 6 months in one single visit in last five years.
        That is not true. An absence of 6 months creates a presumption of breaking continuous residence, but it is not an absolute thing. If the absence is less than 12 months, the applicant is allowed to present evidence of their ties to the US during that absence in order to overcome the presumption, and the interviewer will use their discretion to evaluate it and make a decision.

        If they kept a house or apartment in the US while they were gone, and had a spouse and/or minor children remaining in the US during that 8 month trip, and there were no other long trips, I think their chances of approval are fairly good. However, it is subjective so we cannot reliably predict what the interview will decide. Advise your relative to gather up evidence of ties of having to the US during that trip (rental agreement or mortgage statements, bank statements, etc.) and apply and see what happens.

        EB3 ROW I-485 Approved: July 2007
        USC: July 2013
        I am a layman, not a lawyer. What I write here is not official or professional legal advice. In addition, my answers on this forum are specific to the scenarios discussed in each thread and should not be generalized to other situations.

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