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Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.
Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq., Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 108706
Experience:  10+ years of experience in various aspects of U.S. Immigration Law.
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I have been a Permanent Resident Alien since 1977. I have no

Customer Question

I have been a Permanent Resident Alien since 1977. I have no expiration date on my Green Card. Obviously my picture is not current but the fingerprints are. I have been told as I enter the country,only once to twice that I need to get it updated. Most times no comment is made.
I came from the United Kingdom.
Can I do Dual Citizenship?
How Long each year can I be out of the country before I lose my Resent Status
My mother is 90 yrs old and I wish to spend more time with her.
Thanks Beryl Woolford (Ms)
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hello! My name is***** and I am a licensed attorney with more than 13 years of experience. I am here to assist you with your questions. Please understand that if I ask you for additional information, you are NOT charged again and our communications are NOT timed. So please see this as a relaxed conversation between friends. I am here to help.

The renewal is not the problem. How much time are you spending outside of the U.S. every 12 months?

Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
I do not know why you are not responding, but you are not charged per question, per response, nor per answer. So after I give you my answer, you can continue to ask me questions without additional charge until you are satisfied. I apologize if it is a site issue that you posted and the post did not go through.
How much time are you spending outside of the U.S. every 12 months? I need to protect you from abandonment of Residency.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I want to spend about two months (DEC2015/Jan 2016) Please answer the questionsI listed. I think they are straightforward
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Where are you. If I do not get answers I will cancel Credit card????
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am disputing charges
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

My apologies. I am a practicing attorney with my own firm. I am not given a salary to be behind the computer all the time. Interestingly enough, this morning I was busy doing some charity work for underserved children in the community, specifically helping to distribute school supplies to 4 different area schools that are in rough areas. As such, I was not able to get back behind a computer until now. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

As to your questions, they are straightforward questions, but U.S. immigration law is very complicated. When I ask questions, it is because I care and I go above and beyond what is asked for so that I can earn an excellent rating. Perhaps you believe this website is a scam and you are nervous, but I assure you that it is a legitimate. I feel that I must remind you that I originally responded to you within 15 minutes and then you never replied back, so then almost an hour later, I responded again and you did not reply until over 3 hours later. At that time, I did connect with my laptop and had an answer already written out but I lost connection just as we arrived to one of the schools. I had to re-type my answer which now I am able to do. Again, I thank you for your patience and understanding.

Let's start with your green card. Luckily, there is no law that requires you to renew an old green card like that. When you travel and come back, a CBP officer will most likely stop you and try to scare you into renewing it. You should very firmly but gently and kindly tell him that you are aware that you are not required to renew such a card. That you are aware that in September 2007, USCIS attempted to promulgate regulations to require such a renewal but that they never went through. So for now, there is no such requirement. He or she will probably get a little upset, but stand your ground because you are not required to renew it. IF you want to renew it on your own, it would require filing of an I-90. Here is a link:

But keep in mind that it will cost you $450 and that you will then have to renew every 10 years because those cards do require that you renew them. The ones that have no expiration date do not have such a requirement. Keep in mind that if you decide to renew, the price of renewal will probably go up every few years.

As far as how much time you should be staying in the U.S., that would be about 180 days or more out of every 12 month. Remember, they call it Residency because you are supposed to be "residing" in the U.S. to maintain it.

Anyone that is a Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) and is outside of the U.S. for 180 days or more within any 12 month period (not necessarily calendar year) creates a rebuttable presumption of abandonment of residency. That presumption can be rebutted by evidence to the contrary such as filing U.S. taxes, maintaining a home in the U.S. and paying that mortgage or rent, maintaining a U.S. drivers license, U.S. bank accounts with significant movement, etc.

Someone that has been outside of the U.S. for more than 1 year without first having an approved re-entry permit has abandoned their residency and only in very few exceptions (such as serious illness) can they get it back.

Here is an official link:

This may become a problem in one of your trips back into the U.S., when you apply to renew your residency card, or when you apply for U.S. Citizenship.

Also, you won't be able to solve with by applying for U.S. Citizenship because you have to have at least 30 months of physical presence in the U.S. out of the 60 months previous to applying.

In order to avoid problems in the future if you still need to spend more time outside of the U.S., you would need to apply for a Re-Entry Permit which is done on form I-131. Here is a link:

This will allow you to be outside of the U.S. for up to 2 years. If you need more time, you come back and apply for 2 more years. After that, they get harder and harder to get and they usually only issue them for 1 year at a time. At some point, you will need to start living/residing in the U.S.

Again, I apologize for the delay, but as you can imagine, I had a busy morning helping the children of the community.

My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up questions and there is no additional charge. Also, should you need to chat on the phone, private email or need help reviewing documentation, I am happy to do so for a small additional cost. Let me know if you are interested in these – I am happy to give you more details! When we are done, if you would be so kind as to leave a positive rating for my service, I would sincerely ***** ***** You can even ask additional questions without additional charge even after leaving a positive rating. Thank you for your understanding.

Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Hello. I'm just following up with you to see how everything is going. Did my answer help? Please let me know. Thank you!