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Immigration Issues/4 years expired green card


Dear Mr Hay
I used to live and work in California for over 12years legally as a green card holder.Then I moved back to my Homecountry Germany 5 years ago with my daughter, who is now 13 years old and a US citizen.In the meantime my greencard expired 4 years ago. But my daughter became more and more homesick and also missed her dad (my exhusband)alot, so I decided to come back to California. I used my german Passport and got into the States with a 90day touristvisa. My question is: Is it possible to renew my greencard even though I have been out of the country for so long and since it has been expired for such a long time?
Is there a penalty to pay,and if so,how much would it cost?
It was not very clever not to renew it in time, but the damage is done, but I hope there is a way.

Thank you so much in advance for your answer.

No, I am afraid not. You should really have thought about this before you left. All you would have had to do was come in at least once a year.

At this point you have no option other than to leave and try to re-enter. However, at this point, if you enter too many times under the waiver visa, then you may be barred since the waiver visa is not intended to allow people to live in the USA and just come in and out every 90 days.

I wish I could give you some good news, but your greencard is dead. You will need to find some other basis to stay if that is what you want.

Immigration Issues

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Alexander J. Hay


I am a U.S. lawyer with offices in Houston, Texas and in Belize. I can answer questions on U.S. Immigration, U.S. corporate law, and Offshore Tax and Asset Planning.
If you are on an H or L visa I am NOT GOING TO ANSWER your questions since they are usually highly fact oriented, and also you have a company attorney handling the whole thing. Call your own attorney please! If you disregard this request, don't be surprised if I answer with "homework question".


I am a U.S. attorney with offices in the United States and Belize. I have experience helping to protect assets, reduce taxes, and improve investment performance by utilizing global investment techniques.

Harvard University, A.B. degree; University of Houston Law Center, J.D. Degree; Fulbright Scholar

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