How can lawful permanent residency be taken away?

Lawful permanent residents - known as LPRs - can live and work in the United States for the rest of their lives. However, permanent resident status can be revoked for several reasons.

Certain Arrests and Convictions

Committing certain crimes can have devastating consequences for LPRs, including the loss of the green card and deportation. Drug offenses (including marijuana), domestic violence crimes, firearms offenses, and other crimes involving “moral turpitude” (a general term to describe acts that are morally reprehensible and intrinsically wrong) are a few examples of crimes that could make an LPR deportable. It is critical that an LPR speak with an attorney before admitting guilt to any crime and seek the advice of an immigration attorney to understand how an arrest will affect their LPR status before the criminal case is completed.

Failing to Remove Conditions on Permanent Residency

Some LPRs receive a conditional green card that is valid for a period of two years. Failure to file a petition to remove the conditions on such a green card can result in the termination of conditional residency and possible deportation. It is important to monitor the expiration date of the conditional green card and follow the process for removing the conditions correctly.

Falsely Claiming to Be a U.S. Citizen

Noncitizens, including LPRs, who claim to be U.S. citizens, whether in writing or not, are subject to removal from the United States. A false claim to U.S. citizenship is a serious violation of law and can have extreme and devastating immigration consequences. Exceptions to and waivers of this ground of removability are rarely available.

Abandonment of Permanent Residence

LPRs who remain outside the United States for long periods of time risk a determination that they have abandoned their permanent resident status. There is no set formula. However, in general, a trip outside the United States for less than six months is usually not a problem. A trip of six months to one year will trigger increased scrutiny when the LPR returns; at a minimum, the LPR should have a reasonable explanation for the lengthy trip. A trip of one year or more will likely result in a determination that the LPR has abandoned permanent resident status. It is advisable to speak with an immigration attorney before leaving the U.S. if the trip will be longer than six months.

Categories: Immigration News