What is the ‘Commuter Status’ card and what are its disadvantages if you have a Green Card?

What is the ‘Commuter Status’ card and what are its disadvantages if you have a Green Card?


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The card of Commuter Status It is a document that allows citizens of Mexico or Canada to travel frequently to United States territory for work reasons. This card is a permit that grants Mexican or Canadian citizens traveler status without affecting their permanent resident status. The government of USA has offered this alternative for people who live in these countries but who have to cross the border daily to work in the United States.

There are two variants of this document, the first allows Mexican or Canadian citizens to travel constantly to USAthe second is granted only to workers who perform jobs temporary or seasonal in the country. To identify residents who have this travel option, the Green Card of said holders is marked with the acronym C2, different from the C1 Green Card that indicates the holder as a permanent resident in the United States.

Although this status is an advantage for many people who are established in Canada or Mexico who travel directly to USA, offers different possibilities to a Green Card standard permanent residence, the biggest difference is that the holder of a Commuter Status card will not be eligible to apply for US citizenship by naturalization until they change their status to permanent resident.

Other disadvantages of having Commuter Status

In addition to the fact that the holder of a Green Card C2 will not be able to carry out the citizenship process by naturalization to become a US citizen until he changes his status to a standard permanent resident, nor will he be able to sponsor his family members to be able to carry out the permanent residence process in USA. In addition, the owner must carry out some additional procedures.

Every 6 months, a cardholder Commuter Status must be presented at a port of entry to USA to complete Form I-178 with the information that the immigration and border authorities require, in addition to verifying whether this is done with the documents that the corresponding authorities request. If the beneficiary wishes to change their immigration status again, they must complete more paperwork.

Through Form I-90, the applicant and cardholder Commuter Status may request to return to a permanent resident regime, it is the procedure that corresponds to the application or replacement of Green Card. To request this change, the interested party must prove that they have worked continuously for at least the last 90 days in United States territory. In the event that the holder loses his job for a period of 6 months, he will also lose his permanent resident status except if he is a person who suffers from a chronic illness.

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