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I was issued with a green card in 1986. I lived in the USA…

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I was issued with a...
I was issued with a green card in 1986. I lived in the USA with my husband until 1992 when we moved overseas for his work. We are still overseas. I need to know my residency status as we will be returning to the US in the next 1-2 years. Thee is no expiry date on my green card. I assumed as I could not return within 1 year that it was no longer valid and have been visiting the US every year since 1992 on the visa waiver program. I receive conflicting advice on my status - I need to renounce my residency and start again. I don't need to renounce my residency but just apply again. I can apply for renewal of my green card as it has no expiry date and I have been returning to the US every year. I also file joint tax returns with my husband. Would appreciate your advice. I am a UK citizen
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Immigration Law
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Answered in 49 minutes by:
6/25/2010
Immigration Lawyer: Wilton A. Person, Immigration Lawyer replied 8 years ago
Wilton A. Person
Wilton A. Person, Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 4,147
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You would most likely be determined to have abandoned your intent to be a lawful permanent resident because you have not lived in the US for over eighteen years, have been traveling to the US under the Visa Waiver Program for the same amount of time, and it is my assumption that you did not obtain a reentry permit as evidence that you did not plan to abandon your residency status when you initially were out of the US for a year.

 

There is not a formal renouncement period, the U.S. Custom Border Patrol officer

could revoke your permanent resident status if you try to reenter the US using your green card. However, you would have a right to present rebuttal evidence in front of an immigration judge that you have maintained your lawful permanent resident status if your card is revoked.

 

The threshold issue is whether you intended to abandon your lawful permanent resident status so you would could present evidence that you maintained a U.S property, maintained a US address, filed US taxes, maintained US bank accounts, and that you lived in the US at least six months every year.

 

The factors that demonstrate that you abandoned your US residency are the length of time that you have been out of the US and the fact that you have traveled as a nonimmigrant under the Visa Waiver Program which is essentially a concession by you that you have abandoned your US residency.

 

If your husband is a US citizen which is my assumption, you could attempt to enter the US with your green card and if it is revoked, it would probably be less expensive for your husband to file for an immigrant visa on your behalf because it would probably be less expensive than a hearing in front of an immigration judge if you do not have a compelling case. There is really no black and white rule as to when a person loses his or her permanent resident status which is probably why you have received conflicting information. The US Customs and Border Patrol Officer has broad discretion as to whether to revoke a person's green card subject to your due process rights.

 

 



Edited by Wilton A. Person on 6/25/2010 at 1:02 PM EST
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
Are there Immigration Offices that you can talk to someone about this. I will be in the US in August in Jacksonville, Florida
Immigration Lawyer: Wilton A. Person, Immigration Lawyer replied 8 years ago

Here is the link to the USCIS Local Office in Jacksonville although your specific situation may be beyond their scope of expertise.

 

https://egov.uscis.gov/crisgwi/go?action=offices.detail&office=JAC&OfficeLocator.office_type=LO&OfficeLocator.statecode=FL

 

 

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