Continuous Residence and Physical Presence Requirements for Naturalization
Naturalization applicants must show either continuous residence in the U.S. for five years or continuous residence in the U.S. for three years, for qualified spouses of U.S. citizens.
Depending on length of time, an absence could disrupt continuous residence. For example, continuous residence may be disrupted by absences of over six months, but less than one year unless proven otherwise. Absences that exceed a year may also disrupt continuous residence.
Residents of the U.S. who live in other countries will want to make sure that they maintain their U.S. residency to avoid abandoning their green card and to also ensure they meet the continuous residency requirement for Naturalization. There are various ways to ensure a permanent resident meets the continuous residence requirement, this is where a good immigration attorney can advise properly.
For naturalization eligibility, an applicant must also show that they were physically present in the U.S. for thirty months within the five years before applying. In cases of qualified spouses of U.S. citizens, applicants must show that they lived in the U.S. for eighteen months within the three years before applying. Additionally, applicants must show that they have lived for at least three months in the USCIS district where they are applying for naturalization.
For naturalization purposes, residents who spend a good amount of time in another country and should be aware of the amount of time they are physically present in the U.S. The physical presence requirement is a pretty straightforward requirement, so it is important to keep track of the time spent in the U.S. as a resident and be able to demonstrate this.
If you have any questions regarding Naturalization, please do not hesitate to contact our Office. We are here to help.