We, at Reddy & Neumann, P.C., love getting phone calls from happy clients who are excited to share the news that they have received their “green cards” in the mail and are now Lawful Permanent Residents of the United States. Inevitably, shortly after this phone call, we receive another call sharing the wonderful news of a baby on the way, and the mom-to-be is planning a trip back home for the delivery. It is important to be prepared for the return to the U.S. after a child is born outside the U.S. to LPR parents.
As a reminder, mom should make plans to return to the U.S. with the child no more than one year after her exit. This is to ensure that she won’t be considered to have abandoned her permanent residence by remaining outside the country for too long. Also, the return trip to the U.S. should be the first trip mom makes after the child is born. Mom should carry Baby’s original birth certificate and foreign passport, a letter from the U.S. Consulate, and 4 passport-style photographs of the child. The letter from the Consulate should state that the LPR can travel to the U.S. with a child on her first visit. This confirmation can be very helpful to the airline staff who may not be aware of the regulations governing this particular situation.
It is also recommended for Mom to carry other documents related to the birth, such as original medical records, ultrasound copies, family pictures with the baby, etc. Furthermore, Mom should be ready to document that she did not abandon her permanent residence status. She can carry copies of U.S. tax returns, documents related to home ownership such as recently paid property tax records, bank statements, or a letter from Dad’s employer in the U.S. These documents may not be requested, but it is helpful to have them just in case.
At the airport, be prepared to answer questions regarding the reason for the travel, the duration of the trip, why the baby was born overseas, etc. Mom and Baby will need to go through Secondary Inspection at the Port of Entry to complete some paperwork. Baby’s passport should be given an I-551 stamp valid for one year which temporarily documents that the child is a Lawful Permanent Resident while the green card is being produced. Within a few weeks to a few months, Baby’s green card should arrive in the mail.
Reddy & Neumann, P.C. is an immigration law firm in Houston, Texas. For over 15 years, our firm has successfully represented corporate clients across the United States in their efforts to bring foreign workers and business professionals to the United States. Reddy & Neumann, P.C. is highly experienced in working with employment-based visas, adjustment of status, green cards, and PERM labor certification. From filing, through approval, and on to appeal, we do everything possible to ensure that your company can bring the best and brightest in the world to the United States.