Green Cardby Debbie McGoldrick
- Renewing my nine year old green card having lived in Ireland
- Extending your stay with a 90 day holiday waiver - is it possible?
- Renewing my Irish child’s US passport without getting her American Dad involved
- Having divorced my American wife can I get my new Irish girlfriend a visa?
- I-94 arrival and departure cards in United States will soon be obsolete
“My questions – if we ever had the chance to return to the U.S. would our period of illegality here be held against us? For instance, if we were fortunate enough to win a lottery green card? We are very friendly with a business owner who says he would gladly sponsor us for visas, so if we spend time at home would this eventually help?
“We are worried by the fact that our sons are U.S. citizens which would hurt our chances of ever getting a visa. Is this correct?”
As you’ve been living undocumented lives in the U.S. for eight years it’s understandable that you find your situation overwhelming, particularly with children involved.
But it’s best that when you leave here in the spring that you depart with knowing the facts – chief among them is that, yes, if a visa opportunity ever did arise in the future, the time that you’ve spent here undocumented would indeed prevent you from securing legal status.
Here’s the situation – those who reside in the U.S. for at least six months (180 days) without documentation but less than a year (365 days) face a three-year ban from re-entering the U.S. after they depart the country; those who have lived here for more than a year without status face a 10 year re-entry bar.