Immigrant Visas: Returning Resident Visa

A permanent resident (called lawful permanent resident or LPR) or conditional resident (CR) who has remained outside the United States for longer than one year, or beyond the validity period of a Re-entry Permit, will require a new immigrant visa to enter the United States and resume permanent residence.

U.S. legal permanent residents whose I-551 Alien Registration Card (green card) has expired or has been stolen/lost while visiting Cambodia can apply for a Boarding Foil at the Consular Section of the American Embassy in Phnom Penh.

The Permanent Resident can appear in the Consular Section any Monday or Tuesday between 1pm to 2pm to apply for a Boarding Foil. The following are the required documents:

  • A valid passport
  • A complete form I-131A, Application for Travel Document (Carrier Documentation).
  • Payment receipt or payment notification for the form I-131A. The fee for this application must be paid online via the USCIS online filing system at, by selecting “FORMS,” and navigating to Form I-131A.
  • Two recent 2″ x 2″ passport photographs.
  • Police report of stolen or lost permanent resident card (if applicable)
  • Evidence of last departure from the United states (for example airline (e-)ticket or boarding pass)
  • Any other documentation/letters from USCIS regarding your current status.

This process may takes from several days to two weeks. Therefore, it is important that you apply for the boarding foil as soon as possible or at least one month before your planned departure to the United States.

Replace Permanent Resident Card

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website provides information and directions necessary to apply for Permanent Resident Cards, aka Alien Registration Receipt Cards (ARC), aka ‘green cards’, including renewal or replacement of such cards. A ‘green card’ is proof of one’s Legal Permanent Resident (LPR) status and is required for readmission to the United States.

You should not leave the United States again until you have applied for and received your new card. You can apply for your replacement card electronically now, through the USCIS website.

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