Selective Service registration is mandatory for all men living in the United States, including non-citizens and international students, even if the person has already applied for citizenship. Failure to register can result in fines and a prison sentence of up to five years. In addition, those who fail to register are ineligible for federal student aid and some federal jobs. Although military service is no longer compulsory, individuals who do not register with Selective Service still face serious penalties.
What Is The Selective Service?
The Selective Service System is an independent agency of the United States government that maintains information on all male U.S. citizens and residents between the ages of 18 and 25, for use in a possible future draft. All men who are at least 18 years old are required to register with Selective Service within 30 days of their 18th birthday. Registration is also required for immigrants and non-citizens who are in the U.S. on a visa or other temporary status, such as foreign students or refugees.
Failure to register with Selective Service can have serious implications, including criminal penalties and loss of certain government benefits.
It is important to note that only men are required to register with Selective Service; women are not required to register. According to the Selective Service,
“Virtually all men living in the U.S., including non-citizens, are required to register with Selective Service at www.sss.gov when they turn 18 years old. This includes undocumented immigrants, legal permanent residents, those seeking asylum, and refugees.”
Selective Service registration does not guarantee a person will be called for military service – the government activates the draft only in times of extreme crisis or war, and there has not been a draft since 1973. Nevertheless, male individuals must still register in order to maintain eligibility for certain benefits and opportunities. It is important to know that a person’s registration information is confidential and will not be used for any other purpose but its intended use by the government.
If you have already registered with Selective Service or are unsure if you have done so,
If you did not register with the Selective Service and you
(1) are male,
(2) are 26 years old or older, and
(3) lived in the United States in a status other than as a lawful nonimmigrant between the ages of 18 and 26.
you should discuss your status with an experienced immigration attorney.
We Help Clients In All 50 States
An experienced immigration lawyer can help If you have questions about registering with the U.S. Selective Service. If you need help with your green card status, contact Godoy Law Office at 630-912-0322.
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