Long time expat returning after 7 years abroad

My Ismael Rivera,

I'm new to the forum although not new to being an expat. I've been living in Brasil for 8 wonderful but hectic years married to my beautiful and caring wife who is Brazillian. Last time I travelled back to US was 7 years ago. A long time, I know. I am returning again.  Due to financial reasons, my wife will stay here for the time being.  I would like to know if anyone has had a similar experience of travelling back to the mainland and if I am required to carry on my person any documents other than my US passport.
I am married now so, I don't know if that alters the process or if I require anything so that I don't have any trouble coming back into the country in case of emergency.
What is the process after being away for so long? Do I need to visit the Embassy? I guess what I am asking now is: What is the exit and reentry process after being away for almost a decade? As I said, will be travelling alone, as my wife will stay behind but would also like to be prepared as best I can in case I want to bring her later on to live with me in the U.S.

Any tips on this, much appreciated.
Thank you.

Hi EightYearExpat,

Welcome aboard!

All you really need is your US passport (make sure it´s not expired); your RNE (Registro Nacional de Estrangeiro) for re-entry to Brazil and an International Driver´s License if you plan to drive in Puerto Rico until you get a license in San Juan.

Just in case that you want to go back to Brazil, you cannot stay abroad for more than
2 years (unless of course you´re now a naturalized Brazilian citizen).

If you plan to bring your wife to the US someday, it would be better and more economically feasible if you file a petition in Porto Alegre through the newly reopened
American Consulate.

I live close to you (Novo Hamburgo) and if you have anymore questions, please feel free to private message me.

Good luck.

All the best,


If you are American and have a valid passport it is no problem at all to reenter the good olé US of A.

Are you a permanent resident here in Brazil? If so, you can only be gone for no more than 2 years.

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