I’ve seen similar questions but not sure if this has been answered. My husband is a U.K. national. We lived in the US for 6 years then due to my work, no longer reside in the US. We now reside in the U.K. as we knew my work wouldn’t allow us to to fully live in the states, my husband voluntarily abandoned his green card. We submitted the form i407 and the actual green card itself. We’ve received no confirmation or anything.now my question is we would like to visit my family in the states as due to Covid we’ve not seen any of my family in almost 2 years. Will my husband be able to use ESTA to enter? We tried to get an ESTA but it was not authorised. I can only assume this was due to his green card abandonment not fully being processed? Will future travel to the US be a problem? I’m a US citizen and our two children are also US citizens. Any info appreciated.

1 Answer 1


Will my husband be able to use ESTA to enter? We tried to get an ESTA but it was not authorised.

Since your husband has no ESTA, he cannot use ESTA to travel to the US. The proper thing to do if ESTA authorization is denied is to apply for a B visa. That's difficult to do at the moment, but it's the only option.

  • Thanks for that reply. We did think this would be the case. I wonder if in the future he’s be allowed to enter as tourist on Esta? Or is this no longer an option? I just don’t understand why that’s oils be as we did the right thing by abandoning green card.
    – Yoko97
    Commented Jun 19, 2021 at 9:19
  • @Yoko97 Without knowing his answers to the qualifying questions, it's hard to say for sure why his ESTA was refused, but in general being a former permanent resident is not disqualifying. My guess is that it was refused because of COVID-19. See for example travel.stackexchange.com/q/158875/19400
    – phoog
    Commented Jun 19, 2021 at 10:12
  • And, alas, an ESTA refusal is lifetime. Once you were refused you always need to ask for a visa thereon.
    – user4188
    Commented Jun 20, 2021 at 3:47
  • Really? So since we attempted it, even though in the past he has entered on the VWP, because this time was not authorized he will always need to apply for a visa? Thanks for any info.
    – Yoko97
    Commented Jun 20, 2021 at 11:06
  • 2
    @chx that is a common misconception. Nobody knows what the ESTA refusal algorithm is, but a prior ESTA refusal isn't a statutory barrier to using the VWP. It's entirely possible that a post-COVID application would succeed.
    – phoog
    Commented Jun 20, 2021 at 14:28

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