N-400 case and Interview

christoph14

New Member
Hi all, I am new to this forum and hope someone here had a similar situation or able to provide some insight on my case.

I was born in 1990. I got my green card back in 1995. After obtaining the permanent residency, my family and I returned to China. From 2004 to 2008, we visited to the U.S. about once a year. In 2009, I settled down in the U.S. for college until today. I filed N-400 recently (after the 5 years period) and scheduled to a naturalization interview next month. On the interview letter, it basically ask me to provide information about explanation to possible abandonment of citizenship, namely for more than 10 years outside of the U.S. after getting my green card.

My question is: If I explain to the judge during the interview about the fact that I was a minor (under 18) until 2008, given that I had no choice but follow my parents residing outside of U.S., and intentionally moved back to the U.S. for obvious reason when I was 19, is it convincing to show that I did not abandoned my citizenship for the above reasons? Indeed, I left the U.S. for more than 10 years after my green card and only traveled to the states for only once a year from 2004 - 2009.

Would the officer consider the fact that I was a minor,or am I likely to be filed for deportation process after the Interview?

Any comments or ideas are much appreciated. Thank you
 

baikal3

Registered Users (C)
I was born in 1990. I got my green card back in 1995. After obtaining the permanent residency, my family and I returned to China. From 2004 to 2008, we visited to the U.S. about once a year.
What do you mean by "after obtaining the permanent residency, my family and I returned to China"?
Where did you and your family live between 1995 and 2004? In the U.S.? Or in China?
 

FriscoDude

Registered Users (C)
What do you mean by "after obtaining the permanent residency, my family and I returned to China"?
Where did you and your family live between 1995 and 2004? In the U.S.? Or in China?


From what I've gathered, he and his family lived in China after becoming residents so between 1995-2008, and traveled to the US once a year from 2004 until 2008 to keep the green card active. Then once he became 18, 19, he returned to the US on his own to pursue college and now is applying for citizenship. However, they need proof that he didn't abandon his resident status between 1995 and 2008, at least I think that' s what's happening.

It seems like they lived in China ("namely for more than 10 years outside of the U.S. after getting my green card"), hence the interview specifying evidence they didn't abandon residency in the US.
 

christoph14

New Member
Friscodude has it right. Just wanted to make it clear about the last part. The interview is a naturalization interview. I think i will have to spcify evidence and explain about i did not abadon residency in the US.

So what do you guys think? Will i get my citizenship or at risk getting my "profile" revealed and filed for deportation? I can travel in and out of the US with no problem right now; however, i have read some articles that if the judge finds you abandoned your residency long time ago, they will not let you keep the green card after the naturalization interview.
 

FriscoDude

Registered Users (C)
In my opinion, you should consult a lawyer. I don't think anyone on this board can tell you for sure that your citizenship will be approved. Even if someone was in the same situation and was approved, it wouldn't mean that you would be.

I read a case about this British guy who was a LPR then went back to live in England for 2 years and never traveled to the US during that time, then moved back to the US and lived here for 5 years. When he applied for citizenship, not only his application was denied but his green card was revoked because of the 2 years he spent in England. He was then subject to deportation. Evidently, each case is different, there is not always a straight-cut answer as they will review your evidence and make a decision then.

I also know of a green card holder who's never lived in the US, but comes here every 6 months for two weeks to keep his green card active. His 10-year green card got renewed (technically he's always respected the 6-month rule during the 10 years he's been a LPR), but immigration also warned him that it was the last time they'd do it. Anything is possible.

Did your parents keep a residence in the US during that time? Did they travel to the US during those 10 years? Evidently, you could argue that you didn't have the choice since you were a minor and had to follow your parents, but will this be enough?

In my opinion, you should talk to an immigration lawyer, or even a couple, and get their opinion, but it seems like you'd be better off leaving things as they are (especially since you can come and go as you please) as you might have opened a can of worms with your application for naturalization. Others can chime in, but consult a lawyer. This is a tricky situation.
 

BritishGuy

Registered Users (C)
I don't think I'm the BritishGuy in question, but I had a similar issue. Family got Green Card, though decided against moving to the US. We as a family did make may trips to the US in the interim. After University in the UK, I decided to come to the US to work which I did. Lived in the US for many, many years after. Renewed Green Card at some point in between too. Anyway, eventually (not the 5 year make, but more like many, many years after) decided to apply for US Citizenship. Only reason I didn't any earlier was because it just had never occured to me. I was working, living, paying taxes, and generally life consumed my time and it has never occured to me to apply for my USC. Eventually when I did, I got it, but got stuck in a name check for what seemed like ages. I remember the officer did ask me about the absence and I explained I was a minor, but then he could also see that I've been in the US for so long after that it was a bit of a non-event.
 

FriscoDude

Registered Users (C)
I don't think I'm the BritishGuy in question, but I had a similar issue. Family got Green Card, though decided against moving to the US. We as a family did make may trips to the US in the interim. After University in the UK, I decided to come to the US to work which I did. Lived in the US for many, many years after. Renewed Green Card at some point in between too. Anyway, eventually (not the 5 year make, but more like many, many years after) decided to apply for US Citizenship. Only reason I didn't any earlier was because it just had never occured to me. I was working, living, paying taxes, and generally life consumed my time and it has never occured to me to apply for my USC. Eventually when I did, I got it, but got stuck in a name check for what seemed like ages. I remember the officer did ask me about the absence and I explained I was a minor, but then he could also see that I've been in the US for so long after that it was a bit of a non-event.


Interesting! No, I don't think you are the British guy in question as he got his green card independently of his family. With all that being said, what do you think of the OP's chances?
 

christoph14

New Member
Thank you all. I actually got passed the interview as the officer said I was a minor back then and did well with the 5-year period without leaving the states for more than 6 months in-between. Multiple lawyers suggested otherwise, saying chances were slim even after "scrutinizing" my case. Nevertheless, only the result matters and I'm glad I applied for naturalization.
 

FriscoDude

Registered Users (C)
Thank you all. I actually got passed the interview as the officer said I was a minor back then and did well with the 5-year period without leaving the states for more than 6 months in-between. Multiple lawyers suggested otherwise, saying chances were slim even after "scrutinizing" my case. Nevertheless, only the result matters and I'm glad I applied for naturalization.

Oh ok. So you did respect the 6-month rule. Obviously, that makes a huge difference. In any case, congratulations!
 

p@rm4s

New Member
@christoph14 first of all Congratulations! And thanks for sharing, I'm obviously reading cuz my wife is in somewhat a similar position. She became a resident in July 2009 and a couple of months later she got out of the US by land to Mexico (they don't make any records of you going out to Mexico by land) but she came here to give birth to my daughter and marry me. We decided it this way cuz she didn't have any insurance in the US and we got her very good health insurance coverage in Mexico through as part of my job's benefits. She didn't get back in until July 2012 but the officer didn't ask anything to her, just the regular "Welcome back". She's been in an out the US but respecting the 6-month rule. Can you share with us about how long were the periods of time that you were out of the country that could have put you in abandonment risk?

I'm also interested in getting input from you and other forum members on when do you think it'd be safe for my wife to apply for naturalization?


Thanks!!
 
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