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N-400-->time outside the united states

N-400-->time outside the united states

Old Aug 1st 2002, 10:26 pm
  #1  
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Default N-400-->time outside the united states

I hold the green card more than 13 years,
recently I plan to apply the naturalization of USA
citizen.
I have the passport issued by my original country.
But this passport only include about last 5 years
trips information. I think I match the naturalization
requirement. but the 8 years prior to the 5 years
I fly to other countrys very often. I don't keep the first
8 years trip records and hard to remember them
(that time's passport hard to find out now.)
In the N-400 form part 7 C item they want me write
down all the detail trips records since I become a lawful
green card holder.
I have 3 questions here.

1.Can I just put the last 5 years' trips of outside USA?

2.because according the immigarion law it
just require us to match the last 5 years residency
requirement. why does the INS put that question over
the n-400 form?

3.if I can not do that way then what should I do?

thanks for your help in advance!

peter
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Old Feb 26th 2004, 9:14 am
  #2  
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Default Re: N-400-->time outside the united states

Peter,

your questions were very interesting and I am surprised that nobody has answered you.

As that question is also of interest for me, it would be great if you would share your experience.

My problem is that I do not remember my trips. I heared that BCIS has now the system of tracking departures&arrivals - but, nobody knows anything more specific and I suspect it is possible to get from that system the print of that recording.
My serious problem will be missmatch between my bad remembering and their computer recording.

Thanks id advance
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Old Feb 26th 2004, 2:11 pm
  #3  
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Default Re: N-400-->time outside the united states

Originally posted by academic
I hold the green card more than 13 years,
recently I plan to apply the naturalization of USA
citizen.
I have the passport issued by my original country.
But this passport only include about last 5 years
trips information. I think I match the naturalization
requirement. but the 8 years prior to the 5 years
I fly to other countrys very often. I don't keep the first
8 years trip records and hard to remember them
(that time's passport hard to find out now.)
In the N-400 form part 7 C item they want me write
down all the detail trips records since I become a lawful
green card holder.
I have 3 questions here.

1.Can I just put the last 5 years' trips of outside USA?
Based on your intial paragraph, it appears that you have to list ALL your trips outside the US, not just the ones in the last five years.

So, to answer Q1, I would think the answer is "no", you can't.

2.because according the immigarion law it
just require us to match the last 5 years residency
requirement. why does the INS put that question over
the n-400 form?
Despite there appearing to be a contradiction, you have held a Green Card for an extraordinary long time. I think most people apply for US citizenship pretty much as soon as they become eligible.

Also, the eligiblity criteria is five years continuous residency which is not identical to "the last 5 years residency". At least that's what I believe. I may be mistaken.

3.if I can not do that way then what should I do?
<<snip>>

peter
It would be in your best interests to answer all questions honestly and provide the required information to each question. So, if you can't provide the information, there's a good chance that there'll be delays in your application and at worst, your application will be rejected.

I am not a lawyer and these are just my opinions based on having reading immigration newsgroups and the USCIS website.
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Old Feb 26th 2004, 3:03 pm
  #4  
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Default Re: N-400-->time outside the united states

Originally posted by academic
I hold the green card more than 13 years,
recently I plan to apply the naturalization of USA
citizen.
I have the passport issued by my original country.
But this passport only include about last 5 years
trips information. I think I match the naturalization
requirement. but the 8 years prior to the 5 years
I fly to other countrys very often. I don't keep the first
8 years trip records and hard to remember them
(that time's passport hard to find out now.)
In the N-400 form part 7 C item they want me write
down all the detail trips records since I become a lawful
green card holder.
I have 3 questions here.

1.Can I just put the last 5 years' trips of outside USA?

2.because according the immigarion law it
just require us to match the last 5 years residency
requirement. why does the INS put that question over
the n-400 form?

3.if I can not do that way then what should I do?

thanks for your help in advance!

peter
Like it says on the form, list the trips you have made out of the US in the past 5 years.
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Old Feb 26th 2004, 3:19 pm
  #5  
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Default Re: N-400-->time outside the united states

You need to be sure about these issues; guessing could seriously delay and red flag your application for US citizenship. If you can afford it, consider taking advice from an experienced immigration lawyer or an immigration legal clinic (some law schools run such clinics). But the bottom line is: find out what you need to write down to answer the questions properly. Answer wrong and you risk delays.

At a guess, the immigration people would be interested in how many trips you made in your first year as a GC holder. That was my experience when I went through the naturalization process. Question: did you make lots of trips in your first year? If so, did you get clearance from the INS for those trips? (It was the INS "back then"). If you made trips in your first year without seeking approval from the then INS you should consider seeking appropriate legal advice before filling/sending in the N-400 form.

Also, the immigration folks might be interested in how much time you spent abroad as a GC holder. Trips of a week or so are one thing, a year or more living abroad might be a problem if a permit was not granted by the INS. Again, "if so" consider seeking advice from immigration counsel.

Skip this paragraph if you like ... :lecture: The green card is not a "get out of jail free card", there are limitations on its use, if you abuse it you can loose it. ALWAYS ALWAYS STAY IN COMPLIANCE or get permission if you need an extended trip out of USA. Step out of compliance and this can come back to bite you, particularly when later applying for US citizenship. End of :lecture:

On such an important issue you need to be sure you are on firm ground. Guessing could hurt you. Only my view (not professional opinion since I am not an immigration lawyer and have zip expertise in this area, my experience is as a mere layman who went through the naturalization process), but imho you should seek appropriate legal counsel.

Last edited by Patent Attorney; Feb 27th 2004 at 3:55 pm.
 
Old Jul 30th 2004, 7:24 pm
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Default Re: N-400-->time outside the united states

Is there any better info available?
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Old Jul 30th 2004, 7:41 pm
  #7  
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Default Re: N-400-->time outside the united states

Originally posted by kazic
Is there any better info available?

Yes, there is. Pay for a consultation with an immigration attorney.

When my husband applied last May for his naturalization we submitted all the dates he was out of the country since he acquired his residency/green card. Why? Because we felt the USCIS not only has to see that you met the physical requirements for the last five years but that you have not been out of the country long enough in the past to have abandoned your residency status. This could have occurred if you had been out of the country for more than a year without first obtaining a re-entry permit (I-131).

But, to ease your mind, consult with an attorney and get knowledgable advice.

Rete
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Old Aug 1st 2004, 6:08 am
  #8  
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Default Re: N-400-->time outside the united states

You will just have to do the best that you can. I also could not remember the exact days of the few trips out for the last 20 years. I just had to use best guess estimates after conferring with family with the months and years through the 80's and 90's. I approximated some of the days to the 15th (middle of the month). That's the best I could do.

I have been a US citizen since May 2003.

Originally posted by academic
I hold the green card more than 13 years,
recently I plan to apply the naturalization of USA
citizen.
I have the passport issued by my original country.
But this passport only include about last 5 years
trips information. I think I match the naturalization
requirement. but the 8 years prior to the 5 years
I fly to other countrys very often. I don't keep the first
8 years trip records and hard to remember them
(that time's passport hard to find out now.)
In the N-400 form part 7 C item they want me write
down all the detail trips records since I become a lawful
green card holder.
I have 3 questions here.

1.Can I just put the last 5 years' trips of outside USA?

2.because according the immigarion law it
just require us to match the last 5 years residency
requirement. why does the INS put that question over
the n-400 form?

3.if I can not do that way then what should I do?

thanks for your help in advance!

peter
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Old Oct 18th 2004, 10:37 pm
  #9  
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Default Re: N-400-->time outside the united states

I asked this question several months ago, but no one was able to provide plausible info.

Hopefully there are some new user who managed to get more info useful to other users. It would be great to get some more posts.
Thanks in advance.
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Old Oct 19th 2004, 1:20 am
  #10  
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Default Re: N-400-->time outside the united states

Try posting it in the proper forum. A lifestyle forum is not the place for it. Try the US visa or US miscellaneous visa sections of this site for other answers since you are unhappy with the ones you already received.

Rete


Originally Posted by kazic
I asked this question several months ago, but no one was able to provide plausible info.

Hopefully there are some new user who managed to get more info useful to other users. It would be great to get some more posts.
Thanks in advance.
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