A reentry permit is recommended to avoid two main problems:
- Your Permanent Resident Card becoming invalid for reentry into the United States if you are absent from the United States for 1 year or more.
- Your U.S. permanent residence be considered as abandoned (even for absences shorter than 1 year) if you take up residence in another country.
A reentry permit serves as evidence that you did not intend to abandon your resident status, and it allows you to apply for admission to the United States after traveling abroad for up to 2 years. It basically saves you the trouble of having to obtain a returning resident visa.
An extra perk of a Reentry Permit is that you may use it as your main travel document. Many countries throughout the world may allow you to use a reentry permit instead of a passport issued by your country of citizenship placing necessary visas and entry and exit stamps in the permit. Be sure to check with any country you plan to visit about specific requirements before you travel.
Thus, if you are an LPR planning to travel outside of the United States for an extended period of time (1 year or more), it is important that you apply for a reentry permit before you depart the United States. Note that, a Reentry Permit does not guarantee admission back into the U.S. as a Permanent Residence after absences of 1 year or more. However, it significantly helps to establish your intent of not abandoning your resident status. If you stay outside of the United States for 1 year or more and did not apply for a reentry permit before you left, you may be considered to have abandoned your permanent residence in the U.S. If this happens, you could be granted a hearing in front of an immigration judge to decide whether or not you have abandoned your status.
For further information regarding this topic or to schedule a consultation, please contact our office:
Schonberg & Timerman, P.L. at 954-843-3494.