Documents you need to travel outside and then reenter the U.S – Move To America
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Documents you need to travel outside and then reenter the U.S

USA visa stamp document passport page, copy space

When traveling outside of the United States, as a permanent resident, in general, you need to present a passport from your country of citizenship or your refugee travel document to travel to the foreign country. Remember, the foreign country you’re traveling at, might have additional document requirements such as a visa etc.

The documents you need to present to reenter the United States

When trying to re-enter the United States after temporary travel abroad, the first document you will have to present is a valid and unexpired “green card” (Form I-551, Permanent Resident Card). When arriving at a port of entry, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officer will be the one to review your permanent resident card and any other identity documents you present, such as a passport, U.S. Driver’s License or foreign national I.D. card. Then, he will be the one to determine if you can enter the United States.  For additional information pertaining to entry into the United States, see U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s webpage.

Does travel outside the U.S affects your permanent resident status?

You need to know that, all permanent residents are free to travel outside the United States.  Temporary travel usually does not affect your permanent resident status. However, if you do not intend to make the United States your permanent home, you will be certainly found to have abandoned your permanent resident status.

The most common case when this happens, is when you have been absent from the United States for more than a year. Abandonment may also happen when on trips of less than a year where it is believed you did not intend to make the United States your permanent home.  The officer will be the one to decide which your criteria that can justify your travel will be. It can be to visit a family member, a job occupation etc. The important thing is, you should not leave the U.S by not intending to make it your permanent home country.  Some other factors that the officer can consider are also whether you maintained a U.S. mailing address, kept U.S. bank accounts and a valid U.S. own property or run a business in the United States, driver’s license or any other evidence that indicate a temporary nature of your absence.

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