Greencard - Change in citizenship (non-US)
July 16, 2015 11:06 AM   Subscribe

I am a greencard holder. When I applied for my greencard I was a citizen of an EU country. It seems that I am not not a citizen of this country anymore, but am still a citizen of another country (non-EU) in West Europe. What happens if I want to leave/re-enter the USA using my greencard with a passport I have not used to enter/leave the US before. Does anyone have a good contact to get a solid answer about this? Or - even more basic - what happens when I try to leave the US with a passport I have not used to enter it?
posted by nostrada to Law & Government (7 answers total)
It seems that I am not not a citizen of this country anymore

I think that in order to get any kind of sensible answer here, you are going to have to be more forthcoming here about what has happened and what country this is. EU countries by law cannot render you stateless; were you were born in the Western European country in question?
posted by DarlingBri at 11:19 AM on July 16, 2015 [1 favorite]

There are several discussions of similar situations if you google (for example 1, 2). As with all free information on the internet, accuracy may vary.

If you want to get a definitive answer based on the facts of your particular situation, you should consult with an immigration attorney. It's entirely possible that the answer could vary depending on the countries in question and why/how you lost citizenship in one country and gained it in another.
posted by insectosaurus at 11:28 AM on July 16, 2015

Response by poster: I thought that the reasons why and how I lost my previous citizenship are not crucial to the answer. I am working with the gov of my old country to figure out my status. I gained a citizenship which put my old citizenship in a questionable state.

My google fu didn't work for me. Thanks for the link. I agree that only a lawyer would have a definite (?) answer. I was hoping to hear if someone has been trough this here. Thanks so much
posted by nostrada at 11:29 AM on July 16, 2015

I'm a green card holder and when I flew out from the U.S. with a brand-new passport nothing out the ordinary happened.
posted by O9scar at 12:12 PM on July 16, 2015

Best answer: In my experience, travelling on a green card into the US--the US really doesn't care when you're leaving, as long as you have the right to travel to wherever your destination is--puts you into a class of lower scrutiny almost equal to US citizens. They don't stamp your passport or anything, and if the card shows anything about your prior citizenship, it will only state your place of birth which can be totally different from your citizenship (I applied for immigration as a Chinese-born person but held sole Canadian citizenship throughout the entire process; no one ever asked me about it).
posted by serelliya at 1:21 PM on July 16, 2015

Response by poster: Many thanks to y'all!
posted by nostrada at 3:48 PM on July 16, 2015

After an unfortunate incident in which I was denied boarding a plane to the US from Brazil (stolen-passport debacle), I internalized the following checklist (not guaranteed perfect but an improvement on my previous understanding...) of parties whose permission you will need to take a plane journey between countries:

1. The airline carrying you.
2. The outgoing border control of the country you are leaving.
3. The incoming border control of the country you are entering.

and then those same 3 again for the return journey.

Notes about these:

1. The airline needs to really believe that the other country will let you in, because they will get in trouble if you don't get in. For example, you may have difficulty convincing them that a Green Card will be sufficient. In Brazil I was eventually able to convince them.

2. A lot of countries have none or effectively none. Unfortunately for me, Brazil does. They'll need a passport or other "travel document". A Green Card is not one of these :(.

3. I was assured by someone at the local US Embassy that a Green Card is sufficient, without any passport, in theory (but you might experience a delay at the border). Unfortunately, due to (2.), I wasn't able to put this to the test :).
posted by hAndrew at 9:27 PM on July 16, 2015 [1 favorite]

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