A sponsor living abroad must prove to U.S. immigration agencies that he or she maintains his or her principal residence in the United States and intends to maintain it indefinitely. The question does not arise when the sponsor is living in the United States.

When the sponsor is a lawful permanent resident, he or she must show that the lawful permanent status is properly maintained.

When the sponsor is a U.S. citizen living abroad, he or she must show that this is on a temporary basis. A temporary basis may cover an extended period of time — even years, but evidence must be submitted showing:

  • The sponsor left the United States for a limited, not indefinite period of time.
  • The sponsor intends to maintain a domicile in the United States.
  • The sponsor has continued ties to the United States.