Your Rights and Responsibilities as a Permanent Resident

Sep 9, 2015 | Green Cards

As a Miami immigration lawyer, I speak with clients who are new green card holders about their rights and responsibilities as a Legal Permanent Resident (LPR). Below are some frequently asked questions:

What are my rights as a permanent resident?
As a permanent resident (green card holder), you have the right to:

  • Live permanently in the United States provided you do not commit any actions that would make you removable under immigration law
  • Work in the United States at any legal work of your qualification and choosing. (Please note that some jobs will be limited to U.S. citizens for security reasons)
  • Be protected by all laws of the United States, your state of residence and local jurisdictions

If you have any questions about your rights as a permanent resident/green card holder, I encourage to speak with a Miami immigration lawyer.

What are my responsibilities as a permanent resident?
As a permanent resident, you are:

  • Required to obey all laws of the United States the states, and localities
  • Required to file your income tax returns and report your income to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service and state taxing authorities
  • Expected to support the democratic form of government and not to change the government through illegal means
  • Required, if you are a male age 18 through 25, to register with the Selective Service

If you have any questions about your responsibilities as a permanent resident, you should speak with a Miami immigration lawyer.

Does travel outside the United States affect my permanent resident status?
Permanent residents are free to travel outside the United States, and temporary or brief travel usually does not affect your permanent resident status. If it is determined, however, that you did not intend to make the United States your permanent home, you will be found to have abandoned your permanent resident status.  A general guide used is whether you have been absent from the United States for more than a year. Abandonment may be found to occur in trips of less than a year where it is believed you did not intend to make the United States your permanent residence.  While brief trips abroad generally are not problematic, the officer may consider criteria such as whether your intention was to visit abroad only temporarily, whether you maintained U.S. family and community ties, maintained U.S employment, filed U.S. income taxes as a resident, or otherwise established your intention to return to the United States as your permanent home. Other factors that may be considered include whether you maintained a U.S. mailing address, kept U.S. bank accounts and a valid U.S. driver’s license, own property or run a business in the United States, or any other evidence that supports the temporary nature of your absence.

If you would like more information on your rights and responsibilities as a green card holder, please contact Miami immigration lawyer The Law Office of Tatiane M. Silva, P.A., Esq. at (305) 895-2500 or visit our website at tmsilvalaw.com.