Here are some tips on how to file for a re-entry permit

Non-U.S. citizens living in the United States must obtain permission to travel before leaving the country. Anyone who is a lawful permanent or conditional resident requires a reentry permit in order to return to the United States after a travel period of more than a year. It is important to understand and prepare for this permit because without it you could lose your permanent residency status. The following article will help you understand how to file for a re-entry permit.

Who Must File for Re-Entry

A re-entry permit is required for anyone with lawful permanent residency status (LPR) who intends on traveling out of the United States for a period of a year or more. Failure to obtain a permit prior to departing the U.S. could cause problems when you wish to return. After a year out of the country, the U.S. will consider your absence an abandonment of LPR and your permanent residency is no longer valid. The way to avoid this situation is by establishing that you intend to return to the U.S. by filing for a re-entry permit.

How to Obtain a Re-Entry Permit

A re-entry permit must be obtained prior to leaving the United States. It cannot be obtained while outside of the country. The process requires you to complete and submit a USCIS, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, request called a Form I-131. You must also submit the application fee at the time of submission. The form will be reviewed and it could take some time to receive an answer. You should allow plenty of time to obtain a permit because you should not travel without proper authorization to return. You may file for a permit online or in person.

Re-Entry Permit Information

After submitting your application you will be required to appear at a designated location to provide biometrics. Biometrics includes fingerprints and photos. Once your application has been accepted and processed you will receive notice from the USCIS.  You will receive USCIS Form G-1145 stating that your application has been approved. Those who filed electronically will receive an electronic notification. It is essential that you do not travel outside the United States without first obtaining prior approval with a re-entry permit.

Immigration issues can be complex and it is often helpful to discuss your situation with a skilled immigration attorney who will help you understand the process. If you are planning on traveling out of the U.S. for an extended period of time, contact the legal team at Udall Shumway PLC to help obtain the necessary permit.


This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regarding How to File for a Re-Entry Permit, or other Immigration Law matters, please feel free to contact Phil D. Ortega at  480.461.5330, log on to,  or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley.