In 2011, he filed the N-400 naturalization application after three years of permanent residency and marriage to his US citizen wife. USCIS interviewed him as part of the naturalization process. After 18 months of waiting, USCIS denied his N-400 stating that he had not been living in marital union for the requisite 3 years. USCIS stated that according to site visits and investigations, they had determined that he had been living with the mother of his children rather than his wife since before the filing of the I-751. USCIS also denied his N-336 Hearing on Denied Naturalization on similar grounds.
We were hired to handle the federal district court litigation.
In court, the government OIL (Office of Immigration Litigation) attorney argued that because our client did not live with his wife under the same roof during the three years prior to filing naturalization, he was ineligible. Additionally, he questioned whether our client committed fraud by filing the I-751 jointly with his wife when our client was not living with her. The OIL attorney argued that our client was not in a marital union during the requisite three years because the couple did not live together the whole time.
The judge disagreed. He found that although our client was not living physically together during the whole time, they continued to live in a marital union because they were still legitimately married and were trying to work on their marital differences. He stated that the couple may have been informally separated but more factual development is necessary to determine if the separation signified a clear end to the marital union. Read the court’s decision here.