Loss, Theft, Expiration or Lack of Resident Card (“Green Card”)
Lawful permanent residents (LPRs) who have been outside the United States for less than one year may apply for a boarding foil to return to the United States.
If you are a lawful permanent resident and plan to begin with the boarding foil application process using Form I-131A, please take into consideration that you will have to pay online for the processing fee through the USCIS website before coming in person to the Consular Section. You can click here for information about this form and the corresponding fee. You will need to bring confirmation of payment for this fee (e-mail with payment confirmation or payment confirmation sheet, printed) when you come in person to file your application using Form I-131A. As with all immigration fees, USCIS does not issue refunds, regardless of the decision on the application.
Steps to follow:
Schedule an interview and choose a DHL office to pick up your passport after the process is completed using this link: https://ais.usvisa-info.com/en-uy/iv.
On the day of your interview, you must bring the following documents to the Embassy:
- Form I-131A, completed and signed
- Confirmation of payment of the USCIS fee (e-mail with payment confirmation or payment confirmation sheet, printed)
- Valid passport
- Resident card (if expired or damaged)
- A recent color photo, 2×2 inches, frontal view, white background and no glasses
- Police report explaining the circumstances of the loss or theft (if applicable)
- If you lost your passport, you must bring an Immigration Certificate issued by the Uruguayan National Immigration Bureau (1513 Misiones St., Montevideo)
- If you are a conditional lawful permanent resident and you have a resident card with a two-year expiration date, you must have Form I-797 approved by USCIS, showing that you have filed a status update application.
If your boarding foil application is approved, you will need to leave your passport at the Embassy. Once the process is completed, you will pick it up from the DHL office you selected when scheduling your interview through our system.
Returning Resident (SB-1 Visa)
Lawful permanent residents who have been outside the United States for over one year and have not obtained a re-entry permit from USCIS may sometimes qualify for returning resident status.
In general, most permanent residents who have been outside the United States for more than one year must consider the possibility of having a relative who is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident file a new I-130 petition with USCIS on their behalf, since it is very difficult to qualify for returning resident status.
To qualify for returning resident status, you have to be able to prove:
- That you departed from the United States with the intention of returning and have not abandoned this intention; and
- That your stay abroad was caused by reasons beyond your control and for which you were not responsible.
If you do not have any documents proving these two conditions, please think carefully before applying for a returning resident visa because the visa application fee is not reimbursable if your application does not meet the conditions.
If you meet these conditions, visit this website, schedule an interview, and choose a DHL office to pick up your passport once the process is completed.
On the day of your interview, you must bring the following documents to the Embassy’s Consular Section:
- Form DS-117 (Application to Determine Returning Resident Status), completed
- Enough money to pay the US$180 application fee. You can pay at the Embassy’s Consular Section in U.S. dollars or Uruguayan pesos, or using an international credit card.
- Lawful Resident Card (expired or valid)
- Valid passport
- Re-entry permit (if applicable)
- Documents proving when you departed the United States (e.g.: airline tickets, passport stamps, Uruguayan Immigration Certificate, etc.)
- Proof of your ties to the United States and your intention to return (e.g.: tax returns filed while you were abroad, evidence of economic, family, and social ties to the United States, etc.)
- Proof that your protracted stay outside of the United States was for reasons beyond your control (e.g.: medical incapacitation, employment with a U.S. company, accompanying a U.S. citizen spouse, etc.)
Permanent Residents who Give Birth Outside the United States
If you are a lawful permanent resident who has returned to Uruguay to give birth to a child, your child may travel back to the United States without an immigrant visa.
To qualify, you must meet the following conditions:
- The child was born subsequent to the issuance of an immigrant visa to the father or mother who applies for admission during the validity of such a visa;
- The child’s mother was a lawful permanent resident when she gave birth in Uruguay during a temporary visit to the country;
- The child will enter the United States before his/her second birthday; and
- The child will be brought to the United States by either parent, as long as it is the parent’s first return to the United States after the birth of the child.
If you meet these conditions, you can purchase tickets without coming to the Embassy. You must travel with an original birth certificate for the baby and your lawful permanent resident card, which must be shown to the airline before boarding the flight and to the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) authorities upon arrival to the United States.
Section 8CFR 211.1 (b)(2) specifically authorizes minors who meet the abovementioned conditions to travel to the United States without a visa, and states that airlines will not be fined for transporting minors under these conditions to the United States.
If you or your child do not meet these conditions, you must file an I-130 petition on behalf of your child with USCIS.
Abandoning Lawful Permanent Resident Status
If you are a lawful permanent resident (LPR) but find it difficult to meet the requirements needed to maintain status, you can voluntarily abandon LPR status. Although this decision should not be made lightly, some people find it more convenient to travel to the United States under a non-immigrant status than to maintain a domicile in the United States.
In order to be able to voluntary surrender your permanent resident status, you will have to send form I-407 (completed and signed), along with your LPR card (green card) to the Regional USCIS office in Lima, Perú.
For more information regarding this matter, please contact us through: MontevideoIV@state.gov