If you are a student attending school away from home, USCIS’s policy concerning “residence” might make it easier for you pursue U.S. citizenship.
Among other requirements, a person applying for U.S. citizenship must pursue the application in the “State or [USCIS] District” that has jurisdiction over his or her place of residence, and the person must have resided in that location for at least three months before filing the application. “Residence” means the place where the applicant actually physically lives, without regard to whether they intend to be at that place permanently.
This requirement can make it difficult for people who move frequently, such as students and members of the military, to establish the necessary three months of residence. However, USCIS policy provides some flexibility in determining “residence” for naturalization purposes, in some cases providing applicants with a choice.
For example, students who attend school in a State or USCIS District other than their usual home residence may apply for U.S. citizenship where their school is located or where their usual home residence is located, if the student is financially dependent on his or her parents at the time of filing and during the entire naturalization process.
The Obama administration has been encouraging those eligible to apply for U.S. citizenship in advance of the presidential election in November. Policies such as this make it easier for people who otherwise might have been unable to establish residence necessary to pursue their application.
If you or someone you know is interested in pursuing U.S. citizenship, please contact us.
The State Department has released the September 2016 Visa Bulletin listing the priority dates eligible for “Application Final Action,” i.e. when an I-485 adjustment of status (AOS) application may be approved or an immigrant visa (IV) issued, and the priority dates eligible for “Filing Applications,” i.e. when an AOS or IV application may be filed.
As we enter the final month of the 2016 fiscal year, the State Department will advance the “final action dates” for certain categories to ensure that all immigrant visa numbers for the year are used. However, there will be no movement in the “dates for filing” as the department restricts the filing of new applications in an effort to avoid using more than the allotted number of visas.
As of September 1, 2016, the “Application Final Action Dates” in the EB-2 and EB-3 categories for nationals of India will advance approximately three months. The “Application Final Action Dates” in the EB-3 category will advance approximately two months for all other countries except China, for which there is no movement in any employment-based category. As expected the “Application Final Action Dates” in EB-1 for nationals of India and China and EB-2 worldwide remain retrogressed, although the department expects those dates to become current again in October when fiscal year 2017 visas may be issued.
The “Application Final Action Dates” in several of the family-based categories will advance at least a few weeks. In particular, the dates in the F-1 and F-2B categories will advance for all countries, as will the F-3 dates for nationals of Mexico and the Philippines and the F-4 dates for all countries except China and India. The expected temporary retrogression in the second preference for spouses, children, and unmarried sons and daughters of Permanent Residents (F2A) will not occur, but there will be no forward movement in that category.
There again is no change in the employment-based “Dates for Filing,” where the priority dates remain current for all countries in the EB-1 category and in all categories for those not from India, China, or the Philippines. The “Dates for Filing” in the family-based categories will not advance from the dates established in the August 2016 visa bulletin.
You can view the visa bulletin in its entirety below. Please contact us with any questions.
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