Reentry For Green Card Holder 4 Years Outside of the U.S.

Reentry For Green Card Holder 4 Years Outside of the U.S.

  • Applicants: Mr. Wang
  • Nationality: Chinese
  • Applying For: Re-entry as a Lawful Permanent Resident
  • Case Type: I-131
  • Challenges:
    • Out of the country for more than four years to take care of his sick mother
    • Re-entry permit set to expire soon
    • Needed to apply for re-entry as a Lawful Permanent Resident while also applying for more travel
    • Needed a green card renewal
    • Proving he had maintained his ties to America



    For Mr. Wang, a time came to decide whether to threaten his status as a legal permanent resident or to leave his sick mother with no one to take care of her. Well, it was not a difficult decision. Mr. Wang obtained his legal permanent resident status in 2008, a step that can be difficult to achieve. Because the process can be harrowing, many legal permanent residents go to great lengths to not have that status threatened, which can happen when they travel away from the United States for long periods. The United States Citizen and Immigration Services wants to make sure that everyone who has earned a green card fully intends to make the United States their home, both before and after they achieve legal permanent residence. It is an important job, but one that can put immigrants in a bind. Often, even the best-laid plans can be ruined by the random meanderings of life.

    For Mr. Wang, this was, unfortunately, the case. In November 2014, he had to fly to China to take care of his sick mother. She had been diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a lymphatic cancer. Mr. Wang tried to do everything the right way. He applied for travel leave with the USCIS for more than two years of travel so he could return to China to take care of her, and he was approved. However, her situation was serious and only got worse with time. As December 2016 neared, she was forced into hospitalization due to her health, and he was determined to stay. However, his re-entry permit was due to expire. Could a man, a son, leave his sick mother to protect a status he had worked hard to gain and maintain? The answer was an emphatic no. The health and well being of his mother was of far more significance, so he decided to stay. It was a decision that anyone would make. However, it did threaten his status as a legal permanent resident.



    When Mr. Wang came to us in 2018, we quickly saw how strong his case was. He had been out of the country for nearly four years, a very, very long time for these cases, but there were several factors that we felt showed that he was a candidate for re-entry into the United States. USCIS generally uses several factors to determine whether or not a person intended to abandon their status as a legal permanent resident, factors that include whether or not a person maintained family and community ties, whether or not they filed taxes in the U.S., and whether or not a person maintained employment within the U.S. during their trip abroad. They are looking for whether a person established intent to maintain the United States as their home despite their lengthy absence, a precedent that can be tricky to prove without prior knowhow and experience in doing so. Furthermore, his case was also unique.

    Mr. Wang wanted to apply for re-entry to the U.S. as a lawful permanent resident, but because his mother was still sick and she still needed to be attended to, he also wanted to apply for more travel. Since our team is quite thorough, we felt that we could not only get him re-entry, but we could successfully apply for more travel for him as well. We were able to provide an attorney brief along with copious documentation to show USCIS everything it needed to see regarding his intent to make the United States his permanent home. We even provided him with a question and answer sheet of questions he was likely to face from his caseworker regarding his life and his intentions, which can help ease the burden of the unknown on our clients.

    “We did the re-entry package for him. Then when he was approved, we continued to file the reentry permit for the next time he wanted to come back to the United States. And then we were able to get his green card for him as well. All of his cases were easily approved once they got to USCIS.” – Cathy Hsu, Account Manager



    Despite the unusual nature of arguing for his re-entry just so that he could apply for more travel time, using our process for providing documentation and prep work to our clients, he was approved not only for re-entry as a lawful permanent resident but was also approved for a re-entry permit for the next time that he wanted to come back to the U.S. Furthermore, he was also approved for a green card renewal, an extra service we were able to provide for him. We wanted to give him peace of mind regarding his legal status so that he could focus fully on helping his mother instead of worrying about what was going on back home.

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