When living in another country, especially for work, some American citizens choose to renounce their citizenship. The goal is to eventually return to the United States and regain their citizenship. However, in most cases, renouncing your citizenship is permanent and you will only be able to regain citizenship through the process that everyone takes.
Renouncing Your Citizenship
Once you have completed a renunciation oath, you will no longer be a U.S. citizen. If you still have obligations to the government, you will need to fulfill them. However, you will be considered a foreigner. The process of renouncing your citizenship is long and costly. You cannot simply verbally state that you have renounced your citizenship.
When you renounce your citizenship, you will be giving up your right to work in the United States. If you would like to return to the U.S. and work, you will need to apply for a green card like any other immigrant.
Returning to the U.S.
Once you have renounced your citizenship, you will lose the privilege to travel to the United States without obtaining a visa. You will be limited to staying for 90 consecutive days and for 180 days annually.
If you renounced your citizenship before your 18th birthday, you can still have it reinstated. You might also be able to have the renouncing of your citizenship cancelled through an administrative or judicial appeal. If neither of these are available, your best option is to speak with an immigration attorney.
Actions That Can Reduce Your Chances of Regaining Citizenship
You will have a very difficult time regaining U.S. citizenship if you have worked at a policy-level position for a foreign government or if you have run for public office in a foreign country. If you have committed treason or fought against the U.S. government in a war, it will be almost impossible to regain your citizenship. Also, if you have behaved in a manner that is consistent with someone who does not intend to regain U.S. citizenship, such as purchasing substantial property overseas, you may have a more difficult time regaining citizenship.
When renouncing citizenship for tax purposes, you may struggle to regain citizenship. One way to avoid this is to file tax returns for ten years after renouncing your citizenship. Then, you can use this as evidence that you didn't intend to renounce citizenship simply to avoid paying U.S. taxes. But even if it is more difficult to regain citizenship, an immigration attorney, like those at Tesoroni & Leroy, can help you determine whether you can overcome these obstacles.
I'll be up front: I have a criminal record. As someone who's spent lots--and lots--of time looking for a job in my life, I've gotten used to being up front with this fact. It's difficult to get hired with this on my record, and frankly, it never gets less scary to have to tell an interviewer about it. But that doesn't mean I'm unemployable. I'm a hard worker who can bring a lot to any company. And I also know what an employer needs to do for me. I know my rights. There's no federal law protecting me from discrimination due to my record, but there are plenty of state laws that make it a little easier for me. If you're looking for a job and you have a criminal record, read through this information. Protect yourself during a job search. Know your rights.