Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram

Absences from the US

Part 1  Part 2  Part 3  Part 4


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Part 3

US Citizenship

Welcome to the Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram. We’re delighted to have you join us for part three in our series of video presentations on US Citizenship.  In this presentation, we’re going to continue our discussion on US Citizenship, and what the effect of prolonged absences from the US might have on your eligibility.

More than Six Months but Less than Twelve Months of US Absence – If you’ve been outside the US for more than six months but less that twelve months, US Immigration will consider whether or not you’ve broken the Continuity Rule. If you remember the Continuous Residency Rule must not be broken, and if it is, you may find that the time you have to wait before becoming eligible for US Citizenship can be extended.

We discussed that if you’ve been away from the US for less than six months then the Continuity Rule wouldn’t be broken.  Now we’ll discuss the implications of being away for more than six months but less than twelve months.

There are two measurements for absences: –

–      To Measure your Continued Eligibility for Your Green Card

–      To Measure your Eligibility for US Citizenship

It’s important not to get the two sets of measurements confused. For example, as a green card holder you can leave for up to 12 months and providing: –

1. You did not request classification as a nonresident for tax purposes whilst away.

2. You did not document any abandonment of your residence, for example, selling up, terminating any residential lease agreements, etc.

You would be in good standing to keep your green card.

However, the types of documentation which may establish that the applicant did not disrupt the continuity of their residence in the United States during an extended absence would include, but are not limited to, evidence that during the absence: –

(A) You did not terminate your employment in the United States

(B) Your immediate family remained in the United States

(C) You retained full access to your United States abode, or

(D) You did not take up/obtain employment while abroad.

As you can no doubt see, that it would be very easy to break your continuity of residence without necessarily jeopardizing your standing as a green card holder. (8 C.F.R. § 316.5(c)(1)(ii) Amended 9/24/93; 58 FR 49913)

Absent more than 12 months – If you are absent continuously from the US for 12 months or more, this could break the Continuity of Residence Rule, unless you first obtained permission from US Immigration before leaving for such an extended period.  – United States v. Larsen, 165 F.2d 433 (2nd Cir. 1947); Schwartz v. United States, 121 F.2d 225 (9th Cir. 1941); In re Rothschild, 57 F. Supp. 814 (S.D.N.Y. 1944); United States v. Menichelli, 65 F. Supp. 738 (M.D. Pa 1946)

Re-establishing Continuity of Residence for US Citizenship: – For those aliens on a five-year residency requirement, who have broken the continuity rules, once they return to the US, (assuming they are let back in at all), must wait four years and one day before they can re-file. For those aliens on a three-year residency requirement, they have to wait two years and one day. 8 C.F.R. § 316.5(c)(1)(ii) (Amended 9/24/93; 58 FR 49913) In the next presentation we’ll conclude this video series as to the benefits and protections in acquiring US Citizenship.

Immigration Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram

Immigration Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram

US Immigration Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram
Chris M. Ingram LL.M., ESQ – Immigration Attorney
Admitted in New York.
Practice Specializing in US Immigration Law
401 Wilshire Boulevard, 12th Floor,
[Cross Streets 4th and Wilshire]
Santa Monica,
California 90401
Tel: 310 496 4292

Everyday the Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram provides a comprehensive range of US Immigration expertise. We also provide a free consultation for our prospective clients.

Please note that nothing contained in this website or link therefrom shall be regarded as providing legal advice. Please contact us directly for legal advice specific to your situation. Thank You.

Specializing in the E2 Visa, EB1 Green Card, L-1A Visa and O1 Visa and K1 Visa Marriage-Based Immigration. Attorney Chris M. Ingram is dedicated to providing the very best in US Immigration legal representation. Enjoy our website.

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