Maysville, KY asked in Immigration Law for Kentucky

Q: I have a friend from Lebanon that has a green card & it is expired, what can they do?

They lived in the usa & studied here & went back to Lebanon when a parent became sick & now the green card is expired

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1 Lawyer Answer
Carl Shusterman
Carl Shusterman
  • Immigration Law Lawyer
  • Los Angeles, CA

A: They may be eligible for an SB-1 visa.

The SB-1 visa is given to those people who have previously held an immigrant visa or Green Card for the U.S. They traveled to a different country for a temporary visit, but due to reasons beyond their control or knowledge, they could not return to the U.S within one or two years and lost their immigration status.

The Green Cards are valid for one year, so you must return from your travels to the U.S within that period of time. If you know that you will be staying abroad for more than one year, you must apply for a Re-entry Permit to the U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The Re-entry Permit is valid for two years, so you must return within that time. If you do not return, then you will have to apply for the SB-1 visa.

Examples of reasons which qualify as beyond a person’s control and that prevent them from returning to the U.S could be:

A sudden illness or disease which does not permit travel

A pregnancy where the doctor does not advise traveling

A family dispute during which your travel documents are withheld from you

You need permission to leave the country and you are not able to get it, etc.

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