Obtaining a green card in the United States is a grueling process, and once you receive a green card, you may feel your status is genuinely permanent, especially as you settled into your new country and established a new life.
However, there are rare cases where your status may be revoked. It is crucial for immigrants to maintain their permanent resident status until you either complete naturalization or abandon your status.
How to maintain a residence
According to Forbes, there are several precautions permanent residences should follow to keep a green card in the United States:
- Avoid expiration – do not abandon or ignore the expiration on the green card.
- Maintain a presence in the U.S. – have a U.S. address, bank account, driver’s license, full-time employment and credit card account. It also helps to keep dependents with you in the US.
- Do not be charged with criminal activity – if a green card holder commits serious crimes, the card can be revoked. It is often associated with two misdemeanors or more severe offenses.
- Do not commit fraud during application – if a permanent resident life to receive a green card, it may be revoked. It includes green card marriages, but they are harder to prove.
- Obtain a reentry permit – if a green card holder needs to leave the country for more than six months, they need to apply for a reentry permit.
If a permanent resident commits fraud or serious crimes, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) may terminate permanent status. The holder may seek a review of the termination of your status in a removal proceeding before a judge. If the judge finds evidence for removal, they will issue a final removal order against you, and you will leave the U.S.
There are also rare circumstances where permanent residents will purposely abandon their status. They might do this because they are going to be outside the U.S. for an extended period, moving to another country or declared themselves as a “nonimmigrant” on tax returns.
If you have questions or concerns about your specific residence status, contact the USCIS, and they will inform you the best action for your particular situation.