Re-entry Permits for Permanent Residents

USCIS Re-Entry Permit

The Reentry Permit is a travel document issued to Lawful Permanent Residents who wish to travel for over six months. The applicant must be physically present in the United States when the application is filed. The applicant may depart the United States after the application is filed, and the approved document can be delivered abroad. The applicant may also wait for the reentry permit before leaving.

Applicants may request expedited service in cases that fall under one of the following categories:

  • Severe financial need to the company or individual
  • Extreme emergency situation
  • Humanitarian situation
  • Non-profit status of requesting organization in furtherance of the cultural and social interests of the United States
  • Department of Defense or National Interest Situation (Note: Request must come from official United States Government entity and state that delay will be detrimental to our Government)
  • USCIS error
  • Compelling interest of USCIS

Biometrics (Fingerprint and Photo) Required

The application requires that biometrics be completed, and therefore the the applicant must be physically present in the United States for this. This may lead to difficulties in some cases where an applicant must leave the U.S. as soon as possible. The following are new new guidelines for expeditious biometric appointment requests:

  •  If the applicant needs expedited processing, the Form I-131 instructions provide specific information for submitting pre-paid express mailers with your Form I-131 for USCIS to send your receipt and ASC appointment notice, as well as the completed re-entry permit or refugee travel document, if approved. A request for expedited processing should contain the applicant’s reasons for such processing so that the USCIS may determine whether the applicant qualifies for expedited processing.
  • If the applicant must attend an ASC appointment (fingerprint appointment) in 14 days or less, the applicant may provide an email address or fax number, then the Nebraska Service Center will be able to fax the ASC appointment to the applicant. The ASC will accept a duplicate copy of the appointment notice.
  • If the applicant needs to expedite the I-131 after filing, then the applicant should contact the customer service phone number or make an INFOPASS appointment at their local USCIS office.

Preliminary Caution

Lawful permanent residents who spend more than 1 year abroad may return to the U.S. with a valid reentry permit and will not be considered as having abandoned his/her residence, but only for purposes of entering the U.S.  When the resident applies for naturalization to become a U.S. citizen, he/she will be required to demonstrate that during the 1 year+ abroad that he/she maintained continuous U.S. residence.

If you have any questions regarding the re-entry permit application procedure, please contact us.