Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) status permits foreign nationals to legally reside in the United States. The status is often associated with having a “green card.” Despite the travel complexities caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the LPR’s responsibilities, including maintaining permanent resident status, have remained the same. LPRs who remain outside of the United States for an extended period of time may lose their LPR status.
LPRs who have been abroad for less than one year:
If you are an LPR who has been outside of the United States for less than one year and your green card is lost, stolen, or expired, you may apply for a Transportation Boarding Foil in order to facilitate boarding by the airline to transport you back to the U.S. Boarding foils are similar in appearance to a visa and will be printed into your foreign passport. They are valid for a maximum of 30 days and for a single entry. To issue a boarding foil, an interview with a consular officer is required to confirm that you hold a Lawful Permanent Resident status in the United States.
In order to apply for a boarding foil at Consulate Karachi, you must do the following:
- Complete application form I-131A and pay online. The current fee is $575.
- Obtain a passport photo that meets these photo requirements.
- To schedule a boarding foil appointment, please visit https://ustraveldocs.com/pk/pk-iv-sb1visa.asp#boardingfoil. Boarding foils can normally be processed in 2 business days.
You must bring your completed I-131A, your passport, your passport photo and your receipt of payment. If any of these items are missing you will be required to schedule a new appointment.
LPRs who have been abroad for more than one year:
If you are an LPR who has been outside of the United States for more than one year, you should first contact the USCIS Contact Center to ask if you will be permitted to reenter the U.S. There is no USCIS office at Consulate Karachi and we are unable to answer questions related to your LPR status. If the USCIS Contact Center advises you to apply for a SB-1 Returning Resident visa, you may submit your initial application at Consulate Karachi. A comprehensive guide to SB-1 visas is available here.
If you believe you qualify for an SB-1 visa and would like to submit your application at Consulate Karachi, you must submit the following forms and documents at your interview:
- A completed Application to Determine Returning Resident Status, Form DS-117
- Your Permanent Resident Card, Form I-551
- Your Re-entry Permit, if available
- Fee payment of $180
You must also submit supporting documents that show the following:
- Dates of travel outside of the United States (Examples: airline tickets, passport stamps, etc.)
- Proof of your ties to the United States and your intention to return (Examples: tax returns, and evidence of economic, family, and social ties to the United States)
- Proof that your protracted stay outside of the United States was for reasons beyond your control (Examples: medical incapacitation, employment with a U.S. company, etc.)
Once you have assembled these documents, you may schedule an appointment at https://ustraveldocs.com/pk/pk-iv-sb1visa.asp. If your DS-117 is approved, your application will be forwarded to the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad for further processing. If your DS-117 is denied, your $180 fee payment will not be refunded.
NOTICE: The United States Embassy in Islamabad and the Consulate General in Karachi have resumed limited immigrant and nonimmigrant visa services (including DS-117 applications) at this time. We will resume routine visa services as soon as possible but are unable to provide a specific date.