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How can a conditional permanent resident apply for citizenship?

If I have had my conditional permanent resident status through the EB-5 program for over five years (eight years) and I am still a lawful conditional permanent resident, can I apply for citizenship directly? I filed the I-829 and have been waiting for my unconditional green card for over five years now, but have not received it yet. I have been getting extensions since then. Do I need to be a permanent resident before I apply?

Answers

  • Avatar

    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Conditional permanent residency is still permanent residency, so as long as you file for the I-829 when you are required to do so, you will remain a permanent resident, and once five years hits, you can file for naturalization.

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    Richard A Gump, Jr

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You can file the naturalization application while the I-829 is pending. However, the naturalization application cannot be approved until the I-829 is approved.

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    Charles H Kuck

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You can apply for U.S. citizenship once you have four years and months as a permanent resident OR a conditional permanent resident. Typically, USCIS will schedule you for an interview, at which time BOTH the naturalization and petition to remove conditions will be adjudicated; or it will force USCIS to adjudicate the I-829, as once you are interviewed on the N-400, they only have 120 days to make a decision, or you can go to federal court and have a judge naturalize you.

  • Avatar

    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, if you have been a conditional permanent resident for over five years, you can apply directly for citizenship by filing your Application for Naturalization on Form N-400. You do not need to be a permanent resident before you apply.

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    Gregory Romanovsky

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You are (and will continue to be) a permanent resident of the United States until and unless the immigration service denies your I-829 and revokes your permanent resident status. Therefore, you are eligible to apply for naturalization if you meet all the other requirements. They will not naturalize you until they approve your I-829, but your citizenship application can push things along. Good luck.

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    John J Downey

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you have had the status for over five years I would at least apply now. If nothing else, you will bring your predicament to the attention of USCIS and perhaps prompt some action on your removal of conditions.

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Technically you can apply; however, as a matter of policy, USCIS will reject you.

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    James Yang

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, although one can apply for U.S. citizenship after five years of gaining permanent resident status (and meeting other requirements), EB-5 investors must wait until the I-829 is approved before being able to receive the U.S. citizenship.

  • Avatar

    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The citizenship eligibility is that you be the green card holder for five years and you were physically residing in the United States for 30 months within the five-year period. There is no distinguishing conditional green card holder or unconditional green card holder.

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    Raymond Lahoud

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The conditions would have to be removed before you can apply. But, you are still a permanent resident. So, once the conditions are formally removed, you do not have to wait three years or the like to apply for naturalization. It is rather odd that you are still waiting for the conditions to be removed. I suggest consulting with an immigration attorney.

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    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It is extremely unlikely that the citizenship officers will be willing to adjudicate the removal of condition for an EB-5. As such, you should wait for the condition to be removed.

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