Abandonment of Permanent Resident Status
There are circumstances when a permanent resident no longer intends to return to the U.S. and/or reside permanently in the United States. In these situations, it may be appropriate for the individual to abandon their permanent resident status.
The process of abandoning permanent resident status involves filing Form I-407 (Abandonment of Permanent Resident Status) with USCIS. If the applicant is residing outside of the U.S. at the time the decision is made, the form should be filed with the appropriate office of the American Embassy/Consulate in the country where they are residing.
The individual must submit their permanent resident card along with the Abandonment form. A copy of the form will be returned to the individual, signed by the USCIS adjudicator and confirming the effective date of abandonment of permanent resident status. This document should be retained for future reference to confirm both the fact that abandonment of permanent resident status has occurred and the date on which it occurred.
Individuals who subsequently apply for entry to the U.S. under the ESTA program are advised to bring the conformed copy with them for presentation to CBP (Customs and Border Protection) to prove that they are no longer permanent residents.
It is important to consider the effects that an abandonment of permanent resident status may have on other family members. The permanent resident will lose the ability to petition other family members for green cards. This may have a direct effect on other family members, whose only means of obtaining permanent resident status is through sponsorship by the permanent resident who is considering abandonment.
Prior to making a decision to abandon permanent resident status, it is prudent to seek tax advice to determine the effect of abandonment on U.S. tax liabilities.
Abandoning a person’s Permanent Resident Card and status does not affect an individual’s ability to apply for permanent resident status at some future date, as long as the individual continues to qualify under one of the existing green card preference categories.
Contact a London Lawyer for U.S. Permanent Resident Changes
Contact the U.S. immigration law firm of Hodkinson Law Group, based in London, via email or at 44 (0) 20 7299 2490 to learn more. Read about our U.S. immigration attorneys here.