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Kaptan

When to move

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I am wondering if DV winners who have gotten their IV stamps must MOVE to the U.S. within six months (of their medical test), or is it sufficient if they merely ENTER within six months and then move on the second or third trip, some months down the road.

Our intention is to definitely move to the U.S. and live there, but I have a decent job in Hong Kong currently, and it is difficult to have a job lined up in the States before we physically move, so we are debating whether we should make the most of our situation here and delay our move slightly. Would/could the border officers deny us entry during our later trips because we have not moved within the first six months?

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You are required to enter the US and activate your green card before your visa expires (normally within six months from your interview but sometimes less than that due to expiry of medical). Once you enter the US and activate your green card, you can travel back to Hong Kong and take care of any pending stuff. You shouldn't have a problem if you travel outside the US after activating your green card and come back within a period of less than one year. CBP officers usually understand that people need more time to finally move permanently. Susie has done so before and she can come and give you an advise from experience. But generally, you should be ok if you activate your green card first (within the validity of your visa) then travel and comeback less than one year later.

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What sam said.

Do be aware that if you are seen to be LIVING outside the US you can lose your green card. So yes I did what you want to - entered, activated, worked a while longer at a very well paying job to help the savings - but if you try going in and out repeatedly you will get tripped up sooner or later on the "where is your current home? Where do you currently work?" type questions. So try to keep it to just one more entry after your activation trip if possible (I did two subsequent ones and had a rough time on the first one with an official warning about residency requirements ... But the second one was permanent so no problems in the end).

It's highly unusual to have a job lined up before you go so at some point you're going to have to take the leap of faith! Yes it's scary :)

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What sam said.

Do be aware that if you are seen to be LIVING outside the US you can lose your green card. So yes I did what you want to - entered, activated, worked a while longer at a very well paying job to help the savings - but if you try going in and out repeatedly you will get tripped up sooner or later on the "where is your current home? Where do you currently work?" type questions. So try to keep it to just one more entry after your activation trip if possible (I did two subsequent ones and had a rough time on the first one with an official warning about residency requirements ... But the second one was permanent so no problems in the end).

It's highly unusual to have a job lined up before you go so at some point you're going to have to take the leap of faith! Yes it's scary :)

Thanks Susie. That's the kinda advise from experience I meant :)

If you don't mind me asking, how long did you stay outside the US the first time?

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Thanks Susie. That's the kinda advise from experience I meant :)

If you don't mind me asking, how long did you stay outside the US the first time?

5 months, which shows that the popular belief that you don't get questioned if the absence is under 6 months is wrong...

My belief from my experiences is this: they can see (from the info you have to give the airline) if you have a return ticket back out. The rest of my family entered again after an 11 month absence, but that time we were all on one way tickets, and as soon as we confirmed this to the officer there were no more questions!

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5 months, which shows that the popular belief that you don't get questioned if the absence is under 6 months is wrong...

My belief from my experiences is this: they can see (from the info you have to give the airline) if you have a return ticket back out. The rest of my family entered again after an 11 month absence, but that time we were all on one way tickets, and as soon as we confirmed this to the officer there were no more questions!

Thanks for the detailed answer Susie :)

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As I know Green Card has 5 year valid period, what happens next if I don't become US citizen?

And if I came back from US after I get Green Card for 11 month, does it reflect on giving me citizen status after 5 year?


Sorry, I think I found answer on my first question :)http://www.uscis.gov/green-card/after-green-card-granted

Edited by GreenUsa

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As I know Green Card has 5 year valid period, what happens next if I don't become US citizen?

And if I came back from US after I get Green Card for 11 month, does it reflect on giving me citizen status after 5 year?

Sorry, I think I found answer on my first question :)http://www.uscis.gov/green-card/after-green-card-granted

I'm not sure that link has the citizenship requirements. If you are out of the US for longer than 6 months then the later entry date starts the 5-year period again. There is also a requirement for physical presence in the US before you apply for naturalization. So if you keep leaving for longer than 6 months or keep spending too much time out of the US, even if you don't get your green card revoked (which is likely in this circumstance) you will never become a citizen.

Also if you get a green card through DV it is valid for 10, not 5, years. You remain a LPR after that but will have to get a new card, if for some reason you have decided not to naturalize.

Edited by SusieQQQ

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