I am a US citizen by birth but grew up in England, what are the repercussions regarding not having enrolled for the selective service?

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I am a US citizen by birth but grew up in England, what are the repercussions regarding not having enrolled for the selective service?

I am a US citizen by birth and was moved away to England by my legal immigrant parents when I was a year old. I have maintained my passport until now and visited in 8 months ago (when I was 25 years old) to apply for my social security number with the intention of making a permanent move to the US. However, I was never informed tat I would have to enroll for selective service and am heartbroken because I had no idea about it. I was not advised in any instance neither by the US embassy in London nor the social security office in the US that I should enroll. Does this relinquishes my citizenship in any way? What about a status information letter?

Asked on December 28, 2014 under Immigration Law, Florida

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

If you haven't turned 26 yet, you can still register without any major issues.  You register at any local post office or online.  Penalties don't starting accruing until you are over 26.  If you are over 26, most of the actions against you would be considered administrative-- like denial of participation in certain government benefits, but they won't strip you of citizenship for failure to register.  To take action against you, there would also need to be proof that you intentionally or knowingly failed to register.  Your defense would be that your failure was not knowing or intentional.  From what you describe, you should have time to get registered.... just go to the Selective Service website and register soon.  Once you register, you will receive the status information letter.  Make sure that you keep this in a safe place in the event that any agency or a program needs to verification that you have registered.


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