Permanent resident whose petitioning spouse passed away filed for citizenship. The USCIS challenged him about the validity of the original marriage and did not make a decision on the case. More than 120 days passed so we filed a 1447(b) action in federal court. The USCIS subsequently denied the naturalization application based on the fact that he was working for the government outside of the US for much of the time after his naturalization interview and because he filed 1 day too early. The AUSA filed a motion to dismiss. In response we argued that the USCIS did not have jurisdiction over the matter after the 1447(b) action was filed, the delay caused by the USCIS should not be used against the petitioner, and that he filed on time (3 months vs. 90 days). The judge agreed that the USCIS lost jurisdiction after the 1447(b) action was filed, frowned upon the reasons for the denial, and remanded the matter back to the USCIS for a prompt decision.
The USCIS dropped the inquiry into the marriage, approved the petition, and scheduled the client for an oath ceremony.