Skip to main content

What are the consequences for LPRs who fail to report the change of address with USCIS?

Red Bank, NJ |

I am an LPR since 2006. I have never reported the change of address since I moved out of my ex husband's house (2010) as I didn't know about this rule. I have been in China now for 8 month with my fiance and we are coming back in two months. Shall I at this point report the change of address? I want to avoid any problems being admitted back into the country as I found out a failure to report an address change is a violation. We gave up our apartment in NJ before we left and receive our mail temporarily at his parent's address which is in CT while we are away. We plan to find an apartment in NJ and reside there when we come back. I have NJ driver's license, filed my return as a NJ resident. Shall I report my temporary mailing address in CT to USCIS where I really do not plan to reside?

+ Read More

Attorney answers 3

Posted

You cannot updo the past, so start filing change of address forms with the USCIS after you return to the US. Also, since you were outside the US for more than 180 days, this raises a legal presumption that you abandoned your lawful permanent residence. You should be ready to convince the CBP officer at your port of entry that you always intended to return to the U.S.

(213) 394-4554 x0 Mr. Shusterman is a former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82) with over 35 years of immigration experience. His response to your question is general in nature, as not all the facts are known to him. You should retain an attorney experienced in immigration law to review all the facts in your case in order to receive advice specific to your case. Mr. Shusterman's statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.

Asker

Posted

Before I left the States a USCIS representative told me over the phone that as long as I away for less than a year it is ok. Unfortunately, i decided to do a deeper research of this question online when I was at my 7 months mark abroad. I am aware that I most likely will be questioned and I am ready to provide my evidences that I did not intend to abandon my residency. I have a mailing address, driver's lisence, bank accounts, a car. I still pay my car insurance and phone service. And I am going back with my fiance who is an american citizen. We will have letters from our employer stating that our employment was temporary. Do you think this is not enough proof? I just can't imagine how can they possibly find me having abandoned my residency. The only thing is that they can accuse me of committing an immigration violation by not reporting an address change. That's why I posted the question. What would you advise me to do with the issue of address change? Thank you.

Asker

Posted

Also we are working for an American University and our paychecks are cut in New Jersey. I am filing my taxes as a full year new jersey resident. I think these facts are very compelling in proving that I did not abandoned my status.

Posted

Mr. Shusterman is correct ... your address problem isn't as big as your 'not living in the US' problem.

An absence of more than 6 months will probably cause 'questioning' when you arrive at the US port of entry.

Talk to an attorney ... many of us consult via Skype.

PROFESSOR OF IMMIGRATION LAW for over 10 years -- This blog posting is offered for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Also, keep in mind that this is an INTERNET BLOG. You should not rely on anything you read here to make decisions which impact on your life. Meet with an attorney, via Skype, or in person, to obtain competent personal and professional guidance.

Asker

Posted

Before I left the States a USCIS representative told me over the phone that as long as I away for less than a year it is ok. Unfortunately, i decided to do a deeper research of this question online when I was at my 7 months mark abroad. I am aware that I most likely will be questioned and I am ready to provide my evidences that I did not intend to abandon my residency. I have a mailing address, driver's lisence, bank accounts, a car. I still pay my car insurance and phone service. And I am going back with my fiance who is an american citizen. We will have letters from our employer stating that our employment was temporary. Do you think this is not enough proof? I just can't imagine how can they possibly find me having abandoned my residency. The only thing is that they can accuse me of committing an immigration violation by not reporting an address change. That's why I posted the question. What would you advise me to do with the issue of address change? Thank you.

F. J. Capriotti III

F. J. Capriotti III

Posted

Yes, unfortunately you have learned a very important lesson ... information given over the phone from a government contractor shouldn't be relied on when making important life decisions. Be careful as to how 'strong' you think your 'proof' of residence is. You say you have a mailing address ..... at someone else's place of residence, perhaps your parents? Do the DL, bank, etc. all use this other person's address? The letters might be useful, depending on the words that are used. Don't side-step this issue too quickly ... I still encourage you to consult with an attorney via Skype. As for the address change issue. You can go online and complete the AR-11 ... with the address you self-described as a 'temporary mailing address in CT".

Asker

Posted

My driver's license is a NJ license because we never planned to reside in CT. We use my fiance's parents residence as our mailing address and we are going to stay at their place for a week or two until we find an apartment in NJ. That's why I kept my license the way it is. Will that be a problem: different addresses on my DL and bank statements? It could all be explained. Why would we keep our apartment in NJ and pay rent for 10 months while we are away? But this is my domicile and I plan to reside there upon my arrival. CT address is just a temporary mailing address, I never intended to make it my permanent home.

F. J. Capriotti III

F. J. Capriotti III

Posted

I see how, even though you don't have a physical residence to which you are returning, you believe that you have a domicile in the US. All you can do is hope that CBP agrees. If you get in without problem ... try very hard to not exit the US for at-least 1 year, if not more. And don't try to 'push' things by applying for US citizenship too quickly. Good luck.

Asker

Posted

I very rarely left the country, only to see my family for 10-12 days once in 2-3 years. This is my first and last long stay abroad. Thank you very much for your advice.

F. J. Capriotti III

F. J. Capriotti III

Posted

Good luck.

Posted

i agree with my colleagues.

Law Offices of J Thomas Smith J.D., Ph.D 11500 Northwest Freeway, Suite 280 Houston, TX 77092 713-LAWYER-2 www.MyImmigrationLawyer.info NOTE: Responses are for the education of the community at large and is not intended to be "legal advice." No attorney-client relationship is established by responses or comments.