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nice_man

Weird Question ....

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Filed: Timeline

My sister (from NY state) and her husband just recently applied to have the conditions lifted on my sister's residency. I haven't heard the complete story on it yet, but my understanding is that USCIS wrote them back right away and extended my sister's green card for another year - and told her to start studying for her U.S. Citizenship Test. So, I don't know what that means... I don't know if they're back-logged or what. Anyway, perhaps it doesn't matter.

This is the situation. Her husband just got orders today which will reactivate him back into the U.S. military - sending him to Iraq. He served in combat for 4 years (2000-2004) and had returned to the private sector, but was required to still be 'on call' for 4 more years. Well, 2 years into that phase, the unthinkable has happened and my family is in complete shock over this. But we'll just have to do our best to get through this latest challenge. It could be a real long next 2 years though...

I've said all of that to say this... here is my question...

My sister may return back to Canada to live with/close to my parents for awhile. Her husband's family is from Texas and they just moved to a new city in NY state so they don't have a huge social network built up there yet - my sister would be pretty much alone with her husband gone.

What are my sister's options, as far as returning to Canada? As I mentioned before, she is currently a green-card holder, not far off from becoming a U.S. citizen. Is there a time limit on how long she could be away from the U.S. while in this stage of her immigration, while not affecting her current status in the U.S.?

I thought I would check here first, because I know that you guys are full of lots of knowledge. :)

Thanks in advance for any input - it's so appreciated!

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Filed: Citizen (pnd) Country: Canada
Timeline

Well if she hasn't even got the lifting conditions removed as of yet, and just applied then she's 9 months away from the earliest she can apply for citizenship (if she got her through marriage I would assume 2 years ago due to the time of removal of conditions). Then after applying for the citizenship, the time frame before the sworn in ceremony and testing etc is I believe about another 6-9 months away (depending on state I assume). So it's not like that's comming anytime soon.

As for her situation being just a GC holder through most of this ordeal, she can visit Canada, but cannot live there (without abandoning her GC). So her options would be since she lives in NY at least, is do constant visits to her friends and parents in Canada for weekends or something (if they live close), if not, fly out to see them for a few days every month or so.

Now I'm not sure the exact time you can be away from the US (unless working for a US company outside the US), but I think you can't be away for more then 4 or 6 months a year. Something to check on. Hope some of this helps...


I'm just a wanderer in the desert winds...

Timeline

1997

Oct - Job offer in US

Nov - Received my TN-1 to be authorized to work in the US

Nov - Moved to US

1998-2001

Recieved 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th TN

2002

May - Met future wife at arts fest

Nov - Recieved 6th TN

2003

Nov - Recieved 7th TN

Jul - Our Wedding

Aug - Filed for AOS

Sep - Recieved EAD

Sep - Recieved Advanced Parole

2004

Jan - Interview, accepted for Green Card

Feb - Green Card Arrived in mail

2005

Oct - I-751 sent off

2006

Jan - 10 year Green Card accepted

Mar - 10 year Green Card arrived

Oct - Filed N-400 for Naturalization

Nov - Biometrics done

Nov - Just recieved Naturalization Interview date for Jan.

2007

Jan - Naturalization Interview Completed

Feb - Oath Letter recieved

Feb - Oath Ceremony

Feb 21 - Finally a US CITIZEN (yay)

THE END

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Filed: Timeline

Found this bit of information off:

http://www.foreignborn.com/visas_imm/enter...sidentalien.htm

Less Than a Year: Use Your Green Card

If you are a lawful permanent resident (immigrant) returning to the United States from a visit abroad of less than a year, you may apply for readmission by presenting your Permanent Resident Card ("Green Card") to the immigration authorities at a port of entry.

*** (The one-year time limitation does not apply to the spouse or child of a member of the Armed Forces of the United States, or of a civilian employee of the U.S. Government stationed abroad pursuant to official orders. In this case, the spouse or child must present the card mentioned above, not have relinquished residence, and be preceding or accompanying the member or employee, or be following to join the member or employee in the United States within four months of the return of the member or employee) ****

I have no idea what the last part about being a spouse of a member of the Armed Forces of the United States means. It's over my head! Anybody care to explain it to me in simpler language? Thanks! :)

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Filed: Country: Sweden
Timeline
I have no idea what the last part about being a spouse of a member of the Armed Forces of the United States means. It's over my head! Anybody care to explain it to me in simpler language? Thanks! :)[/font]

It means if your USC spouse is stationed outside the US on military orders, and you go with him/her, then you may stay out of the US for more than one year without automatically losing your green card.

What are my sister's options, as far as returning to Canada? As I mentioned before, she is currently a green-card holder, not far off from becoming a U.S. citizen. Is there a time limit on how long she could be away from the U.S. while in this stage of her immigration, while not affecting her current status in the U.S.?

If she plans on being gone for a year or more, she can file for a re-entry permit to help preserve her permanent residency. A re-entry permit is good for two years so she must return within two years. A re-entry permit is not a guarantee that she will preserve her residency and not jeopardize her LPR status. She must maintain her US residence -- keep a mailing address, keep the bank accounts, continue to file taxes as a US resident, etc.

If she is interested in citizenship, she should be aware of both the physical presence requirement as well as the continuous residence requirement. If she is gone from the US for six months or longer, she will "break" her continuous residence and have to start that clock all over. Read the Guide to Naturalization on www.uscis.gov, it has great information.


"When all else fails, read the instructions."

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Filed: Other Timeline

In your first sentence, you said they applied to lift conditions. Then you say she got a letter stating to study for her citizenship test.

So is she applying to lift conditions, or is she already a permanent resident?

The answer may lie in your response as the factoid you posted applies to legal permanent residents, not conditional permanent residents.

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Filed: Country: United Kingdom
Timeline
In your first sentence, you said they applied to lift conditions. Then you say she got a letter stating to study for her citizenship test.

So is she applying to lift conditions, or is she already a permanent resident?

The answer may lie in your response as the factoid you posted applies to legal permanent residents, not conditional permanent residents.

To clarify (not for the last time, I'm sure! :lol:) :

A Permanent Resident with conditions is STILL a Permanent Resident.

I don't have our old NOA in front of me, but USCIS does strongly encourage all PRs to become citizens, so that 'start studying now' langugage could just be encouragement. The letter the OP mentions could be the NOA that every I-751 filer gets, extending the validity of their status for one year. I-751s may take up to 18 months or more to adjudicate, but the PR may apply for US citizenship on schedule even if they do not yet have a decision on the I-751.

The quoted factoid applies equally to PRs with conditions as to those without.

http://uscis.gov/graphics/howdoi/PermRes.htm

Now That You Are A Permanent Resident

Some of you may be CONDITIONAL RESIDENTS. This page applies equally to you while you are in conditional resident status. The difference between you and an unconditioned permanent resident is that your permanent resident status will expire in two years from when it was given, unless you successfully petition to have the condition removed. Those of you with conditional permanent residence either received your residence through a marriage relationship where the marriage was less than two years old at the time you became a Permanent Resident, (more)

---------

The OP's sister should really meet with an immigration attoney familiar with 'abandonment' to make plans ahead of time. Her situation is less obvious because she will not be going with him, but I could see a case being made for her specifics, too. Worth checking out before everyone leaves town.

Edited by meauxna

Now That You Are A Permanent Resident

How Do I Remove The Conditions On Permanent Residence Based On Marriage?

Welcome to the United States: A Guide For New Immigrants

Yes, even this last one.. stuff in there that not even your USC knows.....

Here are more links that I love:

Arriving in America, The POE Drill

Dual Citizenship FAQ

Other Fora I Post To:

alt.visa.us.marriage-based http://britishexpats.com/ and www.***removed***.com

censored link = *family based immigration* website

Inertia. Is that the Greek god of 'can't be bothered'?

Met, married, immigrated, naturalized.

I-130 filed Aug02

USC Jul06

No Deje Piedras Sobre El Pavimento!

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Filed: Timeline

In your first sentence, you said they applied to lift conditions. Then you say she got a letter stating to study for her citizenship test.

So is she applying to lift conditions, or is she already a permanent resident?

The answer may lie in your response as the factoid you posted applies to legal permanent residents, not conditional permanent residents.

To clarify (not for the last time, I'm sure! :lol:) :

A Permanent Resident with conditions is STILL a Permanent Resident.

I don't have our old NOA in front of me, but USCIS does strongly encourage all PRs to become citizens, so that 'start studying now' langugage could just be encouragement. The letter the OP mentions could be the NOA that every I-751 filer gets, extending the validity of their status for one year. I-751s may take up to 18 months or more to adjudicate, but the PR may apply for US citizenship on schedule even if they do not yet have a decision on the I-751.

The quoted factoid applies equally to PRs with conditions as to those without.

http://uscis.gov/graphics/howdoi/PermRes.htm

Now That You Are A Permanent Resident

Some of you may be CONDITIONAL RESIDENTS. This page applies equally to you while you are in conditional resident status. The difference between you and an unconditioned permanent resident is that your permanent resident status will expire in two years from when it was given, unless you successfully petition to have the condition removed. Those of you with conditional permanent residence either received your residence through a marriage relationship where the marriage was less than two years old at the time you became a Permanent Resident, (more)

---------

The OP's sister should really meet with an immigration attoney familiar with 'abandonment' to make plans ahead of time. Her situation is less obvious because she will not be going with him, but I could see a case being made for her specifics, too. Worth checking out before everyone leaves town.

Isn't there an expedited Naturalisation provision for spouses of those in the military?


"diaddie mermaid"

You can 'catch' me on here and on FBI.

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Filed: Country: United Kingdom
Timeline

In your first sentence, you said they applied to lift conditions. Then you say she got a letter stating to study for her citizenship test.

So is she applying to lift conditions, or is she already a permanent resident?

The answer may lie in your response as the factoid you posted applies to legal permanent residents, not conditional permanent residents.

To clarify (not for the last time, I'm sure! :lol:) :

A Permanent Resident with conditions is STILL a Permanent Resident.

I don't have our old NOA in front of me, but USCIS does strongly encourage all PRs to become citizens, so that 'start studying now' langugage could just be encouragement. The letter the OP mentions could be the NOA that every I-751 filer gets, extending the validity of their status for one year. I-751s may take up to 18 months or more to adjudicate, but the PR may apply for US citizenship on schedule even if they do not yet have a decision on the I-751.

The quoted factoid applies equally to PRs with conditions as to those without.

http://uscis.gov/graphics/howdoi/PermRes.htm

Now That You Are A Permanent Resident

Some of you may be CONDITIONAL RESIDENTS. This page applies equally to you while you are in conditional resident status. The difference between you and an unconditioned permanent resident is that your permanent resident status will expire in two years from when it was given, unless you successfully petition to have the condition removed. Those of you with conditional permanent residence either received your residence through a marriage relationship where the marriage was less than two years old at the time you became a Permanent Resident, (more)

---------

The OP's sister should really meet with an immigration attoney familiar with 'abandonment' to make plans ahead of time. Her situation is less obvious because she will not be going with him, but I could see a case being made for her specifics, too. Worth checking out before everyone leaves town.

Isn't there an expedited Naturalisation provision for spouses of those in the military?

Maybe :)


Now That You Are A Permanent Resident

How Do I Remove The Conditions On Permanent Residence Based On Marriage?

Welcome to the United States: A Guide For New Immigrants

Yes, even this last one.. stuff in there that not even your USC knows.....

Here are more links that I love:

Arriving in America, The POE Drill

Dual Citizenship FAQ

Other Fora I Post To:

alt.visa.us.marriage-based http://britishexpats.com/ and www.***removed***.com

censored link = *family based immigration* website

Inertia. Is that the Greek god of 'can't be bothered'?

Met, married, immigrated, naturalized.

I-130 filed Aug02

USC Jul06

No Deje Piedras Sobre El Pavimento!

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Filed: Other Timeline

Thank you ladies, for straightening me out. I haven't gone down that road yet so I should learn to be careful what I say.

So given what you say, then I don't understand why there are 'conditional' PR's and 'unconditional' PR's. What ARE the legal differences? Why bother with the lifting?

Where does the processing for lifting take place? Your service center? NBC? Calcutta? The Black Hole?

Just wonderin.......

Edited by rebeccajo

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Filed: Country: United Kingdom
Timeline
So given what you say, then I don't understand why there are 'conditional' PR's and 'unconditional' PR's. What ARE the legal differences? Why bother with the lifting?

Where does the processing for lifting take place? Your service center? NBC? Calcutta? The Black Hole?

Just wonderin.......

r'jo,

The portion of law regarding conditions is posted on the removing conditions page, and the link to the law is on the left menu at uscis.gov

Without looking it up (and it is an interesting read.. not too long) and just paraphrasing, it's a fraud prevention method. Somebody must've done a study, or pulled a statistic out of their hat and decided that if a marriage lasted for two years, the assumption (legally) would be that the marriage was not entered into for the sole purpose of gaining the immigration benefit. But, to prove it, the couple would send in evidence and be interviewed to prove it.

I think sheer numbers got the better of them and it became completely impractical to re-interview every couple. The vast majority of I-751s (for marriages--some investors have them too) are approved without interview. A random sampling is pulled (less than 10%?) and then the cases that clearly stink from the evidence submitted are called for interview.

So, they put this two year rule into effect, but did not create a separate, "less than" version of Permanent Residency, they just put an expiration date on it. "We'll let you in for two years. After two years, show us you're still married and that's good enough" (very loosely speaking). I'm guessing that there were too many marriages of convenience (google *that* phrase or MOC and you'll be shocked) *or the impression thereof* that the lawmakers were compelled to do something. I believe someone wrote a post at BE about the history of it all, but you can pick a lot up from the CFR/INA (actual law).

The answer to 'why bother with the lifting' is because if you/immigrant do not, you have no more PR status.

Where the processing takes place is a good question. The form and your evidence is submitted to your Service Center. They have the power to approve, but not to deny, until recently. If the SC felt the case looked smelly, they could refer it to the District Office, who would call the couple in for an interview. There was a recent memo about a new policy that allows the SC to outright deny if they smell fraud.

But for the vast majority of legitimate couples, you fill in the form together, give a copy of your tax returns and other evidence of a co-mingled life and mail it off. You automatically get the NOA extending your status for one year and someone looks at your application eventually. Again, the vast majority are approved without interview, and you get a 'congratulations' letter when they've approved your case. Instructions for getting the 10-year green card are changing right now, but you provide a new photo, turn in your old card and Bob's your uncle.

Some people are concerned about the length of time it takes to adjudicate an I-751 (3-18 months). These applications are not, and should not be, a high priority for the SC. Folinskyinla (immigration attorney) reiterated that just today. I think it's safe to say that we'd all rather have them working on family reunification than rubber stamping (oooh, I'll hear it for that) our marriage based 'we're still married' applications.

Since the immigrant can still apply for naturalization on schedule regardless of the I-751's pending status, and they can still travel and work exactly like they did before their card expired, there is no harm in having the I-751 hanging out there.


Now That You Are A Permanent Resident

How Do I Remove The Conditions On Permanent Residence Based On Marriage?

Welcome to the United States: A Guide For New Immigrants

Yes, even this last one.. stuff in there that not even your USC knows.....

Here are more links that I love:

Arriving in America, The POE Drill

Dual Citizenship FAQ

Other Fora I Post To:

alt.visa.us.marriage-based http://britishexpats.com/ and www.***removed***.com

censored link = *family based immigration* website

Inertia. Is that the Greek god of 'can't be bothered'?

Met, married, immigrated, naturalized.

I-130 filed Aug02

USC Jul06

No Deje Piedras Sobre El Pavimento!

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