The continuous residence requirement is one of the ground requirements for obtaining citizenship through the naturalization process.
There are two types of absences from the USA that are automatically considered to break the continuity of residence for naturalization purposes:
– absences of more than 6 months but less than 12 months (more than 181 days but less than 365 days, to be exact). This includes any absence that takes place prior to filing of the naturalization application or between filing and the applicant’s admission to citizenship.
– absences of 1 year or more (365 days or more). This applies whether the absence takes place prior to or after filing the naturalization application.
An individual who is required to establish continuous residence for at least 5 years and whose application for naturalization is denied for an absence of 1 year or longer, may apply for naturalization 4 years and 1 day after returning to the USA to resume permanent residence. An individual who is subject to the 3-year continuous residence requirement may apply 2 years and 1 day after returning to the United States to resume permanent residence.
Check Form N-400.