U.S. Entry for Child of a Lawful Permanent Resident Born Abroad

It is not uncommon to hear of situations where a pregnant lawful permanent resident (LPR) or green card holder who travels abroad for temporary travel and gives birth while outside the United States. The newborn does not have a green card or other U.S. travel document, and this leads to the obvious question of how the LPR parent can bring her child with her to the U.S. This article is for the benefit of MurthyDotCom readers who encounter such a situation.

Waiver of Visa Requirement for Child Born to LPR Abroad

In general, when the LPR is entering the U.S. after travel abroad, the individual must present a valid travel document, such as an immigrant visa, a valid unexpired form I-551 (i.e., green card), an I-551 stamp, or reentry permit. However, this requirement is waived for a child born to an LPR during a temporary visit abroad if certain conditions are met. Mainly, the child must accompany the LPR parent on their first return trip to the U.S. following the child’s birth, and the child must enter the United States within 2 years of birth. Additionally, both the LPR parent and the child must be admissible to the United States.

Child Becomes LPR upon Admission to the United States

A child born abroad to an LPR parent is not automatically an LPR. Rather, when the child enters the U.S., the officer at the port of entry will complete a memorandum of creation of record of admission for lawful permanent residence (form I-181) for the child. The child then becomes an LPR upon admission to the U.S.


U.S. lawful permanent residency is a coveted status for a foreign national. However, the immigration rules, regulations, and procedures governing this status can be complex. When complexities arise, an individual should consult a qualified U.S. immigration attorney to ensure satisfactory compliance with the law.



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Disclaimer: The information provided here is of a general nature and may not apply to any specific or particular circumstance. It is not to be construed as legal advice nor presumed indefinitely up to date.