After Living In US For 60 Years, Man Finds Out He Is Not A Legal Citizen

Mr Klass, who arrived in the US at the age of 2 during the 1960s, had long assumed that he gained citizenship through his father. 

After Living In US For 60 Years, ManFinds Out He Is Not A Legal Citizen

A 66-year-old Florida man was shocked to find out he's not a US citizen when applying for Social Security benefits. Jimmy Klass has been living in America since childhood and voting in federal elections for decades. 

Despite that, Ms Klass' money was “frozen” because he “hadn't proven to them that I was here legally,” reported News 6

Mr Klass, who arrived in the US at the age of 2 during the 1960s, had long assumed that he gained citizenship through his father. He said his father's origins were in Brooklyn, New York, adding that his parents “decided to load up the truck and move” when he was just 2 years old, the report said. 

"We relocated to Tennessee Avenue in Long Island, to be precise,” stating that they had “moved into the house next to my grandparents.” Mr Klass' mother was Canadian and his paternal grandparents were from Germany. 

Mr Klass also revealed that he was previously approved to join the Marine Corps and offered a position as a police officer. Both roles involve thorough background checks, yet no citizenship issues were brought up, then. "I was accepted, but I declined the offers because I was newly married, expecting a child, and had just purchased a house," he explained.

Even after being a registered voter, having a Social Security card, and holding a valid driver's license, Mr Klass had a union job to provide for his family. He lived his life as a law-abiding “regular citizen”, unaware of any complications. "I was accepted everything: photo ID card, I voted here,” he said.

Mr Klass revealed that there had been no indication of his being in the country illegally, despite Social Security claiming that he “didn't prove it to them.” He received Medicare benefits for over eighteen months without issue. However, he admitted to participating in multiple elections, which is a federal offense according to the FBI. "Nobody has shown up at my door to arrest me," Mr Klass joked. "But yeah, technically, if you vote, and you're illegal, it's federal charges.”

Mr Klass is now forced to defend himself with the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to resolve the issue. Despite providing multiple documents proving his 60-year citizenship, USCIS denied his claims. He also sought help from the Canadian Consulate in Miami without success. Moreover, Mr Klass has been depleting his savings in attempts to resolve the matter, spending thousands of dollars. He even proposed receiving his Social Security contributions back with interest, but USCIS refused. The retired old man had to return to work due to the financial strain caused by this ordeal.