Reston, VA asked in Family Law and Immigration Law for Virginia

Q: Can I leave US and return to my country of citizenship (India), and have my kids remain there with me?

I, my wife and two kids (8 and 15) are Virginia US legal permanent residents, and we all are citizens of India.

I sponsored US permanent residency to my entire family based on diversity lottery visa 3.5 years ago.

I am not happy at all in the US. I would happily return to my country of citizenship. But, by wife won’t agree to return to India.

Question: Would it be illegal if during our vocation trip to India I refuse to return to the US, decide to keep kids there, and stay in India forever?

I understand my US permanent residency will be affected after one year and I don’t really care. All I care is to live in my country of citizenship with my kids. Will I be able to keep my kids in India? Will she be able to legally move kids back to the US?

I don’t want to break the law, but I want to take advantage of my citizenship status (India) and chose to live there close to my kids and with my kids? What jurisdiction is my family under? US (Perm resident) or India (Citizen)?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Kevin L Dixler
Kevin L Dixler
  • Immigration Law Lawyer
  • Chicago, IL

A: That would be an international kidnapping crime unless you were lawfully granted full custody. It is unlikely that she would be denied joint custody unless she was abusive. In addition, it is likely that it will be in the best interests of the children for them to remain in the U. S.

Sometimes, we all become disappointed with where we are and what is happening. It is likely best to avoid forfeiting your lawful permanent resident status, because it will be extremely difficult to get it back, again.

I strongly recommend an appointment with a competent and experienced immigration attorney, who will spend enough time to review your situation and provide wise legal advice. Good luck.

The above is general information, not legal advice, and does not create an attorney client relationship.

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