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Green Card Abandonment
 

When to return a "Green Card"

As a permanent resident of the United States holding a Green Card (permanent resident card) you will have to maintain your status in order to continue to be admitted to the United States as a permanent resident with your card. You can find guidance on USCIS’s website regarding how to maintain your permanent resident status (LPR status).

If you find that you are not able to maintain your status because you reside permanently outside the United States, or for other reasons chose to remain outside the United States for long periods of time, you may wish to voluntarily abandon your LPR status and permanent resident card (Green Card) in order to avoid complications and delays at the U.S. port of entry when applying for entry to the United States as a non immigrant.

If you intend to apply for a non immigrant visa (e.g. a student visa or a temporary work visa), you will have to first abandon your LPR Status and – card.

How to return the “Green Card”

Please print out and complete the I-407 form [PDF 624Kb] (link to .pdf file), and send it to us at the following address:

American Embassy
Attn: Consular Section/I-407
Dag Hammarskjölds Allé 24
2100 Copenhagen Ø
Denmark

Please also include your green card and a self addressed and stamped envelope.

You have to put a Danish address and Danish stamps on the envelope. We need the stamped envelope in order to be able to return a copy of the abandonment form to you.

If properly completed with all required information, the consular officer will sign the I-407 form, and we will forward it to DHS for registration in their electronic systems along with your card.

The stamped envelope is for the return of a copy of the processed I-407. The copy will serve as your evidence of abandonment of status when you apply for entry to the United States as a non immigrant, in case filing of the I-407 was not yet registered with DHS. We strongly recommend that you bring a copy of the processed I-407 with you next time you travel to the United States, in order to facilitate your entry as a Non Immigrant.

After returning the “Green Card”

Signing the I-407 and handing in your card will formally communicate to the immigration authorities that it is no longer your intent to return to the United States as a permanent resident.

When you give up your status and your card, you also give up the rights and benefits that go with that status. If at a later time you want to live, work or study in the United States, you will have to obtain the appropriate visa in order to do so. If you want to go back and be a permanent resident in the United States, you will have to go through the process of applying for a new immigrant visa.

The consular section will sometimes receive inquiries as to whether a former permanent resident will have problems entering the U.S. after the Green Card has been returned.  We cannot provide any assurances on this matter.  It is always the immigration officer at the port of entry who determines whether a traveler to the U.S. may enter the country (either with a visa or under the Visa Waiver Program with an approved ESTA).

Please check the USCIS website at www.uscis.gov for additional information on permanent resident status.

Tips for completing the I-407

  • Item 1: The “A” file number can be found on your permanent resident card.

    Item 4: If you do not remember the date of your last departure from the United States, just give the information you remember (month and year, or just the year), and if you do not remember which vessel or airline, you can write “I don’t remember”.

    Item 5: The address has to be outside the United States. Please indicate the country as well as the street address.

    Item 6a: You MUST check either "am abandoning" or "have abandoned". Please check only one of those 2 boxes. You must state your reason(s) for abandoning your status. The reason could be “I now live in Denmark”.

    Item 6b: If you are submitting your Green Card, write Green Card or LPR Card. If you are not submitting your card along with the form you must state the reason(s) for not submitting the card.

    Do NOT write anything in 6d, this field is for the consular officer to sign.
    All individuals 16 years or older must sign in 6e themselves. If completing the form for a minor child under the age of 16, a parent can sign.

    Remember to put the date of signature in 6e as well.