If you want to become a permanent legal resident in the US, you need a green card. The process of getting a green card can be very lengthy and complex, but it is worth it in the end. However, just because you already have a green card does not mean that it can stay with you for the rest of your life, no matter what.
There are certain actions through which your residence can get revoked. This means that you will be deported back to your country when your green card becomes invalid for some reason. Therefore, you must learn more about the rules and regulations to avoid unintentional mistakes.
Ways you can lose your green card
- By committing fraud.
During the process of applying for a green card, you need to fill out a lot of paperwork. You must make sure to put true and accurate information on each of these forms. If you lie on the forms and get caught later, it may be considered fraud and can become the ground for revoking your permanent resident status. One of the common forms of fraud committed by people is faking a marriage.
- Living outside the US even after getting a green card.
If you have received a green card and become a lawful permanent resident of the US, you cannot live outside the country for a long time. The longest you can go without having any issues is 12 months. If you go beyond one year, you will lose your resident status.
Additionally, not filing IRS taxes while living outside the US can also lead to removal. Every year, thousands of people accidentally lose their green cards because of this very reason. That is why it is important to consult with an attorney to understand the law.
- Committing a criminal conviction.
Committing a crime is one of the common ways people lose their green cards in the US. There are many forms of crime, and not all of them will lead to a revocation. Crimes that are more egregious are likely to impact your immigration status, such as violent crimes (rape, murder, etc.). An immigration judge will order your removal once you have been found guilty.
- Voluntary surrender.
You may not have expected this, but you can lose your green card privileges if you voluntarily abandon your status as a permanent resident. The most common reason people leave is due to tax obligations. In any case, you should first consult with an attorney before handing over your green card rights.