Assignments Abroad

If your job requires leaving the U.S.

Most legal permanent residents must live in the United States for five years before they apply for U.S. citizenship, also called “naturalization.” The residency requirement is three years if you are married to a U.S. citizen. But what happens if your Indiana University job requires you to go abroad?

An absence that lasts less than 365 days is generally fine. If you are going to be outside the country for more than one year, however, your trip will disrupt your residency requirement for naturalization—unless you file Form N-470.

Preserve your U.S. residence with Form N-470

Form N-470 enables you to preserve your residence for citizenship purposes if you leave the United States for more than one year. Your time abroad will count toward your residency requirement.

Only certain types of work will qualify you for N-470 approval. One of those types of work is scientific research for an American institution of research, including Indiana University.

Be sure to submit Form N-470 before you leave on your trip abroad.

Submit Form N-470

Re-entry permits

If you file Form N-470, you must still obtain a re-entry permit to return to the United States. Learn more about absences of a year or more.