U.S. Admission with Expired Green Card & No Ties to the U.S.


  • Nationality: Germany
  • Case: Reentry to the U.S. as Permanent Resident
  • Challenges:
    1. Client’s Green Card was expired;
    2. Client has never lived in the U.S for more than 3 months;
    3. Client has no residence in the U.S.
    4. Client has no bank accounts in the U.S.
    5. Client did not file U.S. federal tax returns
    6. Client has no medical insurance in the U.S.
    7. Client has no employment or job offer in the U.S.
    8. Client has no family or relative in the U.S.
    9. Airline staff may deny his boarding to the U.S. bound flight.
    10. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the airport may interrogate him, where he would not know how to respond to their questions.
    11. With all of his issues, the client was at loss for what documentation to bring in the entry process.


Hans Becker felt he’d blown a big opportunity. In 2008 the German citizen applied for the immigration lottery and been awarded a 10-year residency in the United States. Hans had dreamed of bringing his family’s artisan bakery business for three generations to the U.S., but one complication after another had kept him in Germany. He’d gotten divorced, and his wife was awarded custody of the children. If he left for the U.S., Hans wouldn’t be able to keep his weekend visitation rights and remain a part of his children’s lives. Before he knew it, ten years had passed. He’d never moved to the United States, and his residency card had expired.

Hans quickly bought an airline ticket to the United States with the intention of extending his green card and finally re-establishing his family bakery business in California. At his kitchen table back in Germany, he nervously fingered his airline ticket. The departure date was in two weeks. He feared not only being turned away by the airline but also being denied entry upon his arrival at the U.S. airport. Hans, a man large enough to fill a doorway, suddenly felt small and vulnerable. Fortunately, he reached out to Tsang & Associates.


After reviewing the case, Tsang & Associates realized Mr. Becker faced many challenges. Despite having purchased an airline ticket, Hans’ expired status would likely be flagged, and the airline could refuse to let him board. Should he pass that first hurdle, upon his arrival at a U.S. airport, a Customs and Border Patrol agent (CBP) could deny him entry into the country. At that point, he would no longer have the opportunity to extend his status, and his green card may be confiscated. He’d have to start the application process from scratch.

With a short two-week window before his ticketed flight, Tsang & Associates sprang into action on Mr. Becker’s behalf and drafted three vital documents. The first was a concise and compelling letter to the airline that Mr. Becker could provide should he be denied boarding. The letter outlined his legal rights to still be able to enter the United States and his sincere intent to extend his status and move permanently to the United States.

Next, Tsang & Associates created a package for Mr. Becker to hand-deliver to the CBP agent upon arrival at the U.S. airport. The documents would explain Mr. Becker’s intent to move permanently to the United States to start his family bakery business with the latest innovations and work as a consultant for other companies. The paperwork would also demonstrate Mr. Becker’s advanced education including three Master’s degrees and seven professional certificates. With the understanding that the CBP agent might not have the time nor inclination to examine Mr. Becker’s situation, the documents needed to be carefully crafted to make a compelling while concise argument for allowing Mr. Becker entry into the United States.

In anticipation that Mr. Becker would be forced into a face-to-face interrogation with a CBP agent at the airport, Tsang & Associates drafted a Q&A document utilizing more than 35 years of experience in the process so the client could comfortably and reasonably answer any questions the agent might have. Mr. Becker’s story was indeed problematic. He traveled to the U.S. yearly for vacations not longer than three months but had failed, after ten years, to establish a permanent residence. His inaction was typically a red flag.


Mr. Becker was allowed to board his flight from Germany, and his presentation package for the CPB allowed him to reasonably answer the CBP officer’s questions and gain entry into the United States. Upon entry, he was able to proceed to his status extension procedures, laying the foundation for his innovative artisan bakery business in the United States.


*Name has been changed to protect client identity

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