There are no restrictions on traveling after having submitted a Form N400, Application for Naturalization since you continue to be a lawful permanent resident with the ability to travel overseas and re-enter with a valid green card. However, even though you may travel outside of the U.S. after filing an application for naturalization, there are ways that it still may affect your travel abroad. Talk to an immigration lawyer to learn more about traveling while you have a pending N400 application.
Your absence after filing a Form N400, Application for Naturalization can impede your ability to obtain approval. Two of the most likely ways that traveling can affect your application process are appointments and meeting your eligibility requirements.
Naturalization Interview Appointments
All applicants for Form N400 must attend three important appointments throughout the process. Travel during this period can hinder the N400 processing timeline. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will schedule a biometrics appointment (if necessary) within a few weeks of filing your naturalization application. Most applicants are required to wait a few months until their following appointment known as the naturalization interview. Finally, the oath ceremony is when lawful permanent residents officially become U.S. citizens. You may reschedule these appointments but it will majorly delay your naturalization process. USCIS will eventually deny the N400 application if the appointment notices are ignored.
Traveling out of the country after filing Form N400 for short periods of time is usually not a problem if you’re keeping track of these appointments. If you must travel for an emergency or something out of the ordinary you can surely have a trusted friend or family member check your mail when it arrives from USCIS.
Physical Presence or Continuous Residence
The continuous residence and physical presence requirements remain in effect after filing a Form N400. Therefore it is vital that you do not take lengthy trips for over 180 days and you must remain mindful of the accumulated time outside of the country.
Once USCIS sees that you traveled for longer periods of over 180 days or more they will presume that you have disrupted the continuous residence requirement. A breach in continuous residence will result in an N400 denial.
If you have traveled and spent significant time outside of the U.S. over the required period, you need to be careful about spending too much time abroad.
Before You Travel Talk With an Immigration Attorney
Deciding to travel out of the country after filing a Form N400 without legal advice is not advisable. Visit Gambacorta Law Office before filing your Form N400. Call us at (847) 443-9303 for an appointment.