A permanent resident or conditional resident who has remained outside the United States for longer than one year, or beyond the validity period of a Re-entry Permit, due to circumstances beyond their control, will require a new immigrant visa to request re-entry to the United States to resume permanent residence.
How to File an Application for Returning Resident Status Determination:
STEP 1: Schedule an appointment at least three months in advance of your intended travel. When you are ready to schedule your Returning Resident interview, email KLIV@state.gov to request an interview date and time. Appointments are available Tuesdays and Thursdays except on Malaysian and U.S. holidays.
STEP 2: Please bring the following to the scheduled interview appointment:
- E-mail print-out of the Appointment Confirmation Page
- Completed Application to Determine Returning Resident Status (Form DS-117)
- Required non-refundable filing fee of $180. Pay the required non-refundable filing fee of $180 (or its local currency equivalent) at the Embassy’s consular cashier, in cash or a major credit card
- Alien Registration Receipt Card, Form I-151 or I-551 (“green card”)
- All valid and expired passports
- Re-entry Permit (Form I-327), if available
- 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.)
- Two color photos (2×2 inch, white background, meeting the requirements on this page: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/photos.html)
- Enter your updated email and contact number on your DS-117 located in line number three.
- You will be instructed to reschedule if you arrive with an incomplete application.
- Payment of the filing fee does not guarantee that the returning resident status will be approved.
- If you are approved for Returning Resident (SB-1) status, the following fees will be required based on the immigrant visa processing: Form DS-260 application processing fee; Medical Exam and vaccination fees.
STEP 3: The interviewing officer will provide you with an official determination notice after the interview. Your passport and alien registration card (“green card”) will be returned at the end of the interview. If approved for Returning Resident Status, you will be given specific instructions for the remainder of the processing. You will be required to return to the Embassy for an immigrant visa interview and you must meet all documentary and legal requirements to qualify for an immigrant visa. You will be required to obtain a new medical exam and pay the DS-260 application processing fee.
You can learn more about Returning Resident Visas here: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/immigrate/returning-resident.html