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Are you a U.S. Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR)? Do you travel often and for long periods on end? Or are you perhaps looking to get permanent resident status in another country?
We have some answers to questions you might have about things like Form I-407 and voluntary abandonment of your Green Card.
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Why would someone abandon their LPR status? You worked so hard to get it and then you decide to let it go.
Here are a few reasons why:
What can you do if you want to voluntarily abandon your Green Card? How would you go to work to get it done? Have you heard of the Form I-407?
A Form I-407 allows a legal permanent resident to officially abandon their LPR status. You file the form at the correct USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) address and officially ask to abandon your Green Card status.
Anyone who wants to voluntarily abandon their LPR status needs to file a Form I-407. You must generally file and sign your own form. But there are special circumstances under which someone can and must sign on behalf of another person.
People who need someone to file a Form I-407 on their behalf:
Form I-407 is the single form that basically starts the application process for voluntary LPR abandonment. But there are more documents required in this application.
Here is a list of the documents required when filing for Green Card abandonment:
Please do not mail your passport to the USCIS. You still need it, and besides, your passport is from your home country (USCIS has no jurisdiction over that document). You are abandoning your LPR status, but that doesn’t mean you are unwelcome in the future. You will, however, need to follow the immigration procedures from the start if you want to re-enter the U.S. in the future.
The USCIS has a detailed instruction form on how to complete Form I-407. Remember to use a black ink pen to complete your form. Write legibly and neat and answer all questions fully and accurately.
You must write your Alien Registration Number (A-Number) on the top right-hand corner of each page. Read the instructions provided by the USCIS on how to present you’re A-Number.
Remember to sign your form when you are done. All unsigned applications are rejected by the USCIS.
There was a time when you could file an I-407 at many places, but now there is only one address for mailed applications. Mail your application for Green Card abandonment to the following address:
U.S. Postal Service:
USCIS Eastern Forms Center
Unit PO Box 567
Williston, VT 05495
For FedEx, UPS, DHL or any other registered delivery services:
USCIS Eastern Forms Center
Unit 124 Leroy Road
Williston, VT 05495
Make sure you use the correct address or else your application may not go through.
Unlike many other types of immigration-related applications, the Form I-407 has no filing fee. You may have to pay for the postal services required to deliver the application, but the USCIS does not charge a fee.
The USCIS can’t account for mailing time. They can only process your application as soon as it arrives. Make sure you use a reliable postal service to minimize the time lost during postage. The USCIS office that processes I-407 forms aims to have your request done from receiving to completion within 60 days. It may, however, take longer.
Keep your end of the bargain and complete the application accurately. Remember to sign your application or else it will be rejected.
Perhaps you haven’t found the answer you are looking for. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions regarding the I-407.
Yes, someone can be pressured to sign, but only when circumstances are compelling enough to warrant the pressure from a U.S. immigration official. Sufficient evidence must point to the fact that the person took up residence in another country or they have broken U.S. laws. Then someone may pressure an individual to sign an I-407.
Once you’ve applied for abandonment you lose your Lawful Permanent Resident. You are no longer the beneficiary of a Green Card and you lose the benefits and privileges associated with it, like applying for a permanent resident student loan. You can’t have any documentation in your possession that indicates otherwise. You must surrender any documentation that indicates you are LPR of the U.S.
If you plan to be abroad for an extended period, you can always apply for a reentry permit. Reentry permits can last for up to 2 years. Upon return, your re-entry permit will allow returning to the U.S. as an LPR. A reentry permit is also called a Form I-131.
Just beware though, under the current administration Green Card issuing has become very stringent. Things might change and you could lose your opportunity to return as a resident.
Make contact with the U.S. consulate in that country as soon as possible. They’ll most probably be sympathetic towards your situation. You must prove the circumstances that kept you out of the U.S. is beyond your control. Perhaps they will issue you a unique visa for returning U.S. residents.
There are a few reasons why someone would want to abandon their U.S. residency. Whatever your reason, you must complete a Form I-407 application. Use the information provided here to guide you through your Green Card abandonment.