Cancellation of Green Card After Citizenship Denial
A foreign national who is interested in applying for U.S. citizenship may be concerned about whether a denied citizenship application would result in their deportation from the U.S. Fortunately, this is uncommon, but it is one of the risks of applying for citizenship in some situations. A foreign national may face the prospect of deportation if the reason for the denial of their citizenship means that they also are ineligible for a green card or other legal status in the U.S. Most denials of citizenship are not based on reasons that would make a foreign national ineligible for a green card, though.
Some of the most common reasons for the denial of an Application for Naturalization (Form N-400) include failing the tests for citizenship, which relate to a foreign national’s command of the English language and knowledge of U.S. government. USCIS also may deny a citizenship application if the foreign national did not meet the requirements related to continuous residence and physical presence in the U.S. In situations such as these, the foreign national remains in their current status and does not face any further consequences. Moreover, they may receive a second chance interview if they did not pass one of the citizenship tests, or if there is another straightforward problem with their application that they may be able to address. Read more here about second chance interviews.
When Citizenship Denial Can Lead to Loss of Green Card
USCIS will review a foreign national’s entire immigration file before deciding whether they should be granted citizenship. Sometimes it finds out during this review that the foreign national wrongfully received their green card. Perhaps they engaged in a sham marriage with a U.S. citizen or committed another type of immigration fraud. This could result in deportation proceedings in addition to the denial of citizenship.
In other cases, USCIS might find that a foreign national has abandoned their residence in the U.S. because they have taken long trips outside the country or spent very little time in the U.S. each year. This could lead to the revocation of their green card. Or the citizenship application might contain evidence of a crime committed by the foreign national. In addition to making them ineligible for citizenship, it could make them deportable from the U.S. if it falls within a certain list of crimes defined by the Immigration and Nationality Act.
If you spent six months or more outside the U.S. or committed a crime in a foreign country, you might have been inadmissible when you returned. There are many grounds of inadmissibility, but some common examples include certain types of criminal convictions and public health issues. If the Customs and Border Patrol officer allowed the foreign national to reenter the U.S., even though they were technically inadmissible, they could face deportation if this entry is later discovered. Sometimes USCIS will find out about the entry from the citizenship application.