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Expert James
Expert James, Immigration Attorney
Category: Immigration Law
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I live in US about 7 years. I applied N 400 in November 2012

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I live in US about 7 years. I applied N 400 in November 2012 as wife of US citizen. We married almost 9 years. I had an interview and passed exams in May 2013, but my case is pending yet. Now I have a problem of relationship with my husband and think about separation or divorce. How does USCIS look at this situation?
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What type of green card do you have? 10 year card?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

yes

Galina,

Divorce will not be an issue at this point. You've already satisfied the USCIS that your marriage was bona fide and in good faith long ago. You can apply for naturalization on your own, without being married at this point, long as it has been at least 5 years since you got your permanent resident status.

Note that if the divorce is finalized prior to naturalization, you need to inform the USCIS of this change in circumstances. If that is the case, prepare a letter and include the divorce decree. Send it to the office that is now reviewing your case, which should be the local service center you visited for the interview and exam.

If the divorce is finalized after naturalization, then no need to inform.

I hope I have answered your questions. If you need more help, please use the reply button to continue our conversation. If you do not require further assistance, kindly rate my satisfactory customer service (not the outcome or the state of the law which I cannot control) with a top-three rating, as this is the only way I receive credit for assisting you.

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Thank you!
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

My case is pending because in 2010 I was out Us out 196 but it was health reason. If they will looked at my previous year 2008 I hade the same. Is it a big problem for me?

Galina,

That is a totally different question than the one you asked in the first place. I am willing to answer it as well, but please make sure that you understand I only get credit for helping you when you rate my customer service positively.

Also, I don't understand the question. Can you please clarify it for me?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I mean I decided that better to apply as a wife for 3 year than as a 5-year green card holder because I was out of US in 2008 more 8 months.


If I 'll info about divorce before naturalization, will they check previous years?

Galina,

When did you come back to the US after the 8 month trip? What date?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.


It was November 16, 2008

Galina,

Because you applied within 3 years, then you must still be married until you become a US citizen. Otherwise, you have to wait until 5 years after returning in order to apply.

If you get divorced before you actually become a US citizen, then you need to inform the USCIS. The USCIS will stop processing your N-400 and will deny the application until such time that you are eligible - 5 years after you returned.

Please know that while I always do my best to assist customers with coming up with a good solution to their situation, from time to time, the law does not provide a good solution to every situation. Please do not hold bad news against me by giving me a negative rating.

I hope I have answered your questions. If you need more help, please use the reply button to continue our conversation. If you do not require further assistance, kindly rate my satisfactory customer service (not the outcome or the state of the law which I cannot control) with a top-three rating, as this is the only way I receive credit for assisting you.

A bonus is appreciated, if you feel I've earned it.

If you have immigration or TSA questions in the future, just click Ask Expert James a Question! and make sure you write "FOR JAMES" in the subject or at the beginning of your question. This is the only way to ensure that I will assist you.

Thank you!
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