Asked in Immigration Law for California

Q: Hi i am outside usa with green card for 20 months how to reenter usa I have stayed 30 months in last 8 years. In usa

I have been outside usa more than year according to naturalization rule

Embassy/ field office has no help for me in India

How to reenter usa should I pay

Any penalty to reenter or what are other options to reenter USA

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1 Lawyer Answer
Artur Tunyan
Artur Tunyan
  • Immigration Law Lawyer
  • Glendale, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Under the general rule, If you are a permanent legal resident and intend to stay outside the United States for 1 year or more, you must apply for a re-entry permit with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) prior to leaving the United States. A re-entry permit allows a lawful permanent resident to apply for admission to the United States upon returning from abroad during the permit’s validity without the need to obtain a returning resident visa from a U.S. Embassy or U.S. Consulate. Re-entry permits are generally valid for 2 years from the date of issuance. Therefore, if you are outside of the United States longer than the date the permit was issued (assuming no permit was requested in your case) or, if you are overseas in excess of 1 year, you may be denied entry into the United States. The key word is "may" because the CBP officer may grant entry for good cause shown or may deny it and consider the permanent residency status abandoned. In practice, there are many cases when green card holders are allowed entry after 1 year period, especially if no previous warning was noted. I think the airline will allow you to board the flight to the USA if your Green Card is not expired. If the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer believes you do not intend to continue living permanently in the United States, he/she may revoke your status as a permanent resident. At that point, it is better to have a stand-by attorney who may represent you. You should take into account that every case is unique and it is strongly recommended to discuss your particular case with an immigration attorney and be duly prepared for a negative outcome on re-entry.

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