Residency Requirements for Permanent Residence (PR) holders

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The main reason for issuing Permanent Residency (PR) by a country is to spend longer amounts of time growing ties to that country. Many PR holders are not aware of how much time they can spend outside the country and the consequences.


If you hold permanent resident status in a country, there is a limit to the time you can spend outside that country. If you exceed this limit, your permanent resident status may become invalid or revoked automatically.


One other consequence of spending too much time outside the country is it may affect your citizenship application which requires uninterrupted residence.


Periods of stay outside the country do not affect temporary residence visa holders.


Following are the Residency requirements for Permanent Residents of some countries :

  • EU Permanent Residence Permit – You can lose the Long-Term Residence status in the EU if you are absent from the EU country for more than 12 months in a row. You can spend periods shorter than 6 months in a row abroad if those periods do not add up to more than 10 months in total during the necessary 5-year period before you apply for Long-Term Residence.
  • United States (US) – Green Card (PR) holders, who are lawful permanent residents, can stay outside the US for a maximum of one year. If you intend to stay outside the US for more than a year, you must apply for a Re-Entry Permit (valid for 2 years) with  USCIS prior to leaving the United States.
  • United Kingdom (UK) – You will lose your Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) status if you’ve been outside the UK for 2 or more continuous years. You may be able to re-enter the UK and get ILR by applying for a Returning Resident visa.
  • Canada – To keep your permanent resident status, you must have been in Canada for at least 730 days during the last 5 years. These 730 days don’t need to be continuous. Some of your time abroad may count towards the 730 days.
  • Switzerland – C permit is permanent residency status in Switzerland. If the holder of a C permit leaves the country for more than 6 months without notifying in advance, the C permit expires after 6 months.
  • United Arab Emirates (UAE) – If you spend more than 6 months outside the UAE, your residence visa will be automatically canceled (golden visa holders and some other categories are exempted).
  • Australia – You can leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you like in the 5 years from the date your permanent residence (PR) visa is granted. If the visa expires, you can apply for a Resident Return Visa (RRV) to re-enter as a permanent resident. However, you must satisfy some residency requirements to retain your PR status.
  • New Zealand – With Permanent Resident Visa (PRV) in your passport, you may return to New Zealand at any time and continue your residence.
  • Singapore –  A valid Re-Entry Permit (REP) is needed each time a permanent resident (PR) travels abroad. The REP allows you to retain your permanent residence while you are outside Singapore. If you leave Singapore or remain overseas without a valid REP, you will lose your permanent residence.
  • Hong Kong – A Hong Kong permanent resident who is not of Chinese nationality will lose his/her Hong Kong permanent resident status if he/she has been absent from Hong Kong for a continuous period of more than 36 months since he/she ceased to have ordinarily resided in Hong Kong.


Contact us to ensure that you are compliant with the residency requirements of your Permanent Residency (PR) status.


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