Lawful permanent residents (LPRs), also known as “green card” holders, are non-citizens who are lawfully authorized to live permanently within the United States. LPRs may accept an offer of employment without special restrictions, own property, receive financial assistance at public colleges and universities, and join the Armed Forces. They also may apply to become U.S. citizens if they meet certain eligibility requirements. The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) provides several broad classes of admission for foreign nationals to gain LPR status, the largest of which focuses on admitting immigrants for the purpose of family reunification. Other major categories include economic and humanitarian immigrants, as well as immigrants from countries with relatively low levels of immigration to the United States.
What documents, identification, and paperwork does a Lawful Legal Permanent Resident (LPR) Green Card holder need to travel internationally?
Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR) of the U.S. must present a Permanent Resident Card ("Green Card", Form I-551), a Reentry Permit (if gone for more than 1 year), or a Returning Resident Visa (if gone for 2 years or more) to reenter the United States.
United States (U.S.) LPRs do not need a passport to enter the U.S. as per 8 CFR 211.1(a), however, they may need a passport to enter another country. Please contact the embassy of the foreign country you will be traveling to for their requirements.
While CBP does not require the passport as noted above, the airlines may have their own requirements, please check with your airlines prior to travel. Also, travel documents for LPRs do not need to be valid for any certain amount of time. Your LPR card only needs to be valid on the day that you are entering the US.
LPRs who are out of the U.S. for more than 180 days are subject to new immigrant inspection procedures as per 8 USC 1101.
Foreign nationals who have applied for permanent residency may need to be approved for advance parole prior to traveling out of the U.S.
In order to be readmitted when traveling back to the U.S. (H1, H4, L1, L2, K3, K4 or V2, V3 holders do not require advance parole to travel abroad after applying to adjust status.