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How to Maintain your Green Card - Tips and Recommendations

Congratulations on becoming a permanent resident of the United States of America! If you become a lawful permanent resident (Green Card holder), you maintain permanent resident status until you:

  • Apply for and complete the naturalization process; or

  • Lose or abandon your status.

There are several ways that you can lose your status as a lawful permanent resident. Here you can find some tips to not lose your permanent resident status by intentionally abandoning it. Your conduct will demonstrate your actual intent. There are some things that USCIS can consider an intentionally abandoning of your status:

1. Move to another country, intending to live there permanently.

2. Remain outside of the United States for an extended period, unless you intended this to be a temporary absence, as shown by:

  • The reason for your trip;

  • How long you intended to be absent from the United States;

  • Any other circumstances of your absence;

  • Any events that force you to prolong your absence, for example, the Covid-19 pandemic.

3. Fail to file income tax returns while living outside of the United States for any period.

4. Declare yourself a “non-immigrant” on your U.S. tax returns.

5. Fail to register with the Selective Service if you are a male between the ages of 18 and 26.

6. Fail to give your new address to USCIS within ten days of each time you move.

Note: Obtaining a re-entry permit from USCIS before you leave, or a returning resident visa (SB-1) from a U.S. consulate while abroad, may assist you in showing that you intended only a temporary absence.

If you do lose your green card, the consequences may affect more than your access to the United States. If you are sponsoring a family member, they could also lose their status. For more information, please contact our office, as we are happy to provide free initial consultations.

About Us

The Law Office of Nicholas J. Mireles is an experienced Los Angeles based U.S. Immigration law firm that has been practicing immigration law since 2013. Our background makes us uniquely well suited to help you with any issue relating to your immigration status.

Law Office of Nicholas J. Mireles, APC

411 West 7th St. Ste 310 - Los Angeles, CA 90014

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