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virola

Permanent resident living outside of the US

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I'm looking for some help from the VJ crew for the first time in a long time. I was on here all the time while we were going through the K1 and then green card application process!

So.....

My husband is a green card holder (currently conditional, but conditions will have been removed by the time this question becomes relevant). I am a graduate student, currently looking into opportunities for when I graduate with a Ph.D. in about a year's time. I am planning on doing a postdoctoral fellowship ("postdoc") in Europe. This would be a temporary position, but probably last 2-3 years. If I chose to go this route (which I am really leaning towards), could my husband move with me to Europe as a permanent resident of the US without jeopardizing his future immigration process here? If so, and his European visa situation allows, could he be employed there? We would fully intend to move back, and keep our US bank account active and travel back frequently. However, I don't want to compromise his chances at getting citizenship one day.

(Note: Moving abroad and doing a short fellowship is quite common in my field of academia (biology)).

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Provided he is regularly returning to the US during those two or three years and resetting his re-entry clock then he might be able to keep his green card.

He should certainly obtain a re-entry permit before you both depart for Europe, which would allow him to remain outside the US for up to two years without the automatic presumption that he has abandoned his residency, although CBP may still want to see evidence of his ties to the US.

If you wind up on the upper end of that scale (i.e. you remain outside the US for three years) it's possible that CBP might believe he has abandoned his residency and would then ask an immigration judge to formally revoke his green card.


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AoS

Day 0 (4/23/12) Petitions mailed (I-360, I-485, I-765)
2 (4/25/12) Petitions delivered to Chicago Lockbox
11 (5/3/12) Received 3 paper NOAs
13 (5/5/12) Received biometrics appointment for 5/23
15 (5/7/12) Did an unpleasant walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX
45 (6/7/12) Received email & text notification of an interview on 7/10
67 (6/29/12) EAD production ordered
77 (7/9/12) Received EAD
78 (7/10/12) Interview
100 (8/1/12) I-485 transferred to Vermont Service Centre
143 (9/13/12) Contacted DHS Ombudsman
268 (1/16/13) I-360, I-485 consolidated and transferred to Dallas
299 (2/16/13) Received second interview letter for 3/8
319 (3/8/13) Approved at interview
345 (4/3/13) I-360, I-485 formally approved; green card production ordered
353 (4/11/13) Received green card

 

Naturalisation

Day 0 (1/3/18) N-400 filed online

Day 6 (1/9/18) Walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX

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Thanks for the insights :).

So, it sounds like after obtaining a re-entry permit and granted that we visit my family or otherwise travel to the US a few times a year (even for brief periods), there should be no consequences, unless we stay for three years? That's great news! It really puts me at ease.

Unfortunately, my husband's green card is still less than two years old, so citizenship isn't yet an option. That would definitely be the preferred option if it were viable!

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Since he has a conditional green card then any re-entry permit he obtains will only be valid up until the date that his conditional green card expires, so less than two years.

No one can tell you that there won't be any consequences; it's entirely possible that CBP will deem his residency abandoned and would ask an immigration judge to revoke his green card. A green card is for someone who wishes to live in the US, and if you aren't living in the US then you can see where this is a problem. 18 months you would probably be able to fudge - maybe even two years - with regular trips back to the US, continuing to file federal income taxes, etc. Three years though is a tough sell.

You would also need to return to the US for his biometrics appointment when it's time to file an I-751 to remove his conditions, and possibly attend an interview. At that point your absence from the US may very well come up, and be an issue.

Edited by Hypnos

Widow/er AoS Guide | Have AoS questions? Read (some) answers here

 

AoS

Day 0 (4/23/12) Petitions mailed (I-360, I-485, I-765)
2 (4/25/12) Petitions delivered to Chicago Lockbox
11 (5/3/12) Received 3 paper NOAs
13 (5/5/12) Received biometrics appointment for 5/23
15 (5/7/12) Did an unpleasant walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX
45 (6/7/12) Received email & text notification of an interview on 7/10
67 (6/29/12) EAD production ordered
77 (7/9/12) Received EAD
78 (7/10/12) Interview
100 (8/1/12) I-485 transferred to Vermont Service Centre
143 (9/13/12) Contacted DHS Ombudsman
268 (1/16/13) I-360, I-485 consolidated and transferred to Dallas
299 (2/16/13) Received second interview letter for 3/8
319 (3/8/13) Approved at interview
345 (4/3/13) I-360, I-485 formally approved; green card production ordered
353 (4/11/13) Received green card

 

Naturalisation

Day 0 (1/3/18) N-400 filed online

Day 6 (1/9/18) Walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX

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Isn't there a 180 day residency requirement for GC holders, meaning that they must live in the US for at least 6 months out of every year? I don't believe hat you can leave for 5 months, come back for a week, then leave for another 5 months, then come back for a week, etc. I think they would catch on.

Edited by Eric-Pris

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If that became a pattern then CBP would certainly pick up on it, yes.


Widow/er AoS Guide | Have AoS questions? Read (some) answers here

 

AoS

Day 0 (4/23/12) Petitions mailed (I-360, I-485, I-765)
2 (4/25/12) Petitions delivered to Chicago Lockbox
11 (5/3/12) Received 3 paper NOAs
13 (5/5/12) Received biometrics appointment for 5/23
15 (5/7/12) Did an unpleasant walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX
45 (6/7/12) Received email & text notification of an interview on 7/10
67 (6/29/12) EAD production ordered
77 (7/9/12) Received EAD
78 (7/10/12) Interview
100 (8/1/12) I-485 transferred to Vermont Service Centre
143 (9/13/12) Contacted DHS Ombudsman
268 (1/16/13) I-360, I-485 consolidated and transferred to Dallas
299 (2/16/13) Received second interview letter for 3/8
319 (3/8/13) Approved at interview
345 (4/3/13) I-360, I-485 formally approved; green card production ordered
353 (4/11/13) Received green card

 

Naturalisation

Day 0 (1/3/18) N-400 filed online

Day 6 (1/9/18) Walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX

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Thanks, again! I'll just reiterate from my original point that he will no longer have a conditional green card by the time we would move; it'll be the 10 year one. But I understand your point. We'll be careful and continue to investigate. (We have a full year before we'd even move.)

Does anybody know about a 6 month GC residency requirement? That would be really important to know going in to this.

Also, if anyone has had a similar experience in their own lives, please speak up!!

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Isn't there a 180 day residency requirement for GC holders, meaning that they must live in the US for at least 6 months out of every year? I don't believe hat you can leave for 5 months, come back for a week, then leave for another 5 months, then come back for a week, etc. I think they would catch on.

I've been under this impression too but I'm not sure. If OP's husband resided more than half of any one-year period abroad, he would need a re-entry permit, no?

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Speaking in general terms, LPRs can usually remain outside of the US for up to six months at a time without issue; for trips lasting between six and twelve months CBP may want to see proof that the alien has not abandoned their residency (maintained a US residence, continued to file federal income taxes, maintained insurance policies, etc.); and trips of between 1 - 2 years require the alien to have a re-entry permit, and CBP may need to same proof as I just mentioned.

There are few hard and fast rules here, and much of it will come down to the CBP officer you encounter on the day. Generally though they will look for patterns, and if they notice that you are entering for a couple of weeks and then leaving for 6 / 8 /10 months and then doing that again, this may attract their attention and give them cause to doubt that you are maintaining your residency.

Edited by Hypnos

Widow/er AoS Guide | Have AoS questions? Read (some) answers here

 

AoS

Day 0 (4/23/12) Petitions mailed (I-360, I-485, I-765)
2 (4/25/12) Petitions delivered to Chicago Lockbox
11 (5/3/12) Received 3 paper NOAs
13 (5/5/12) Received biometrics appointment for 5/23
15 (5/7/12) Did an unpleasant walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX
45 (6/7/12) Received email & text notification of an interview on 7/10
67 (6/29/12) EAD production ordered
77 (7/9/12) Received EAD
78 (7/10/12) Interview
100 (8/1/12) I-485 transferred to Vermont Service Centre
143 (9/13/12) Contacted DHS Ombudsman
268 (1/16/13) I-360, I-485 consolidated and transferred to Dallas
299 (2/16/13) Received second interview letter for 3/8
319 (3/8/13) Approved at interview
345 (4/3/13) I-360, I-485 formally approved; green card production ordered
353 (4/11/13) Received green card

 

Naturalisation

Day 0 (1/3/18) N-400 filed online

Day 6 (1/9/18) Walk-in biometrics in Fort Worth, TX

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We had a re-entry permit during the conditional Green Card period, both with the same expiration.

We then applied for a new one when the ten year card came.

So far, so good with getting the permits.

Keeping both the re-entry permits and proofs of US residency (driver license) has made all the difference for us when returning from extended stays for work in China and Taiwan.


Done: I-130/CR-1, I-751/ROC

Done: I-327

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