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My girlfriend will be traveling to the US tomorrow. She has a 10-year US visa. Her last stay in the USA was a vacation lasting 5 months.

After that, she went back to her native country for 1 month. She is now returning to the US for 15 days.

I heard that if they see you return too quickly they think you're living here and might deny entry. I'm wondering if she will be facing any problems while entering the airport in the US due to coming back so quickly. I'm really worried.

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  • I edited the post can you check if there will be any problem at her entrance ?
    – D. Stev
    Aug 23, 2016 at 6:12
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    Probably wouldn't hurt for her to print out a copy of her flight itinerary to show just in case.
    – user13044
    Aug 23, 2016 at 6:18
  • You might want to add the type of visa she has and what information she provided to get it, as that could make much of a difference.
    – jcaron
    Aug 23, 2016 at 7:26

2 Answers 2

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If her visa type does not explicitly preclude multiple entries, there should be no problems.

I have entered at least thirty times with an L1 visa I had, and the immigration officers never asked why I entered so often. They always asked where I was, why, and for how long.

But, as a more literal answer to your question: yes, she can be denied entry. Any non-US-citizen can always be denied entry. No visa and no situation gives perfect protection, it is the decision of the immigration officer.

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    An L-1 visa is very different from a B-2 visa, though. An L-1 traveler would be more likely to have a legitimate reason for entering and leaving frequently, for example. Furtherrmore, L-1 visitors can be admitted for a longer period and are permitted to reside and work in the US. Note that they asked "where were you" rather than "where are you going."
    – phoog
    Aug 23, 2016 at 15:24
  • Correct. But the OP did not specify the Visa she had, so we don't know any better.
    – Aganju
    Aug 23, 2016 at 15:30
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    "Her last stay in the USA was a vacation lasting 5 months." I think it's a pretty safe assumption, or at least it is highly likely, that she is on a B-2 visa.
    – phoog
    Aug 23, 2016 at 15:41
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    She has a B-2 Visa
    – D. Stev
    Aug 24, 2016 at 14:24
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Since the other answer is based on the experience of someone traveling on an L-1 visa, it is entirely irrelevant to a traveler with a B visa. Accordingly, I am posting this in the hope that it will receive more upvotes and be the first thing that most users will see below the question.

Can one be denied entry to the US due to returning only 1 month after a 5-month stay?

Not literally for that reason, no. However, you're right about this:

I heard that if they see you return too quickly they think you're living here and might deny entry.

This is certainly a possibility. Strictly speaking, the immediate reason for the denial in this case will be that the immigration officer has found that the traveler is living in the US, not that the traveler has returned too soon after the previous visit. (More strictly still, the burden of proof is on the traveler, so one should say "the traveler hasn't proved that she isn't living in the US.")

The finding that the traveler is living in the US is a judgement call, and the traveler's travel history is just one piece of evidence that the officer uses to arrive at a determination. Other evidence about the traveler's intentions, such as family and work obligations back home, will also play a role.

In the pattern presented in this question, it's probably rather likely that the traveler would be admitted, provided that the immigration officer believes the traveler's assertion about the second visit being 15 days in duration, because in that case the total duration of presence in the United States would still be less than the six months initially granted. But it's also likely that the officer will view the claimed duration of the trip with some skepticism, so the traveler should be prepared to face some more probing questions about the reason for her itinerary: why did she leave for a month rather than stay for six months? Why is she coming for just 15 days? Why is she going back after 15 days?

If all of those questions have clear answers, then there's probably a good chance she'll be admitted. If not, or if the officer has any reason to doubt her credibility, there's probably a good chance she'll be sent back home.

If you see this, now nearly eight years after you've posted the question, it will be helpful to others if you can post your own answer describing what happened. The question was brought to the top of the list by a new user who wanted to know.

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