Lost U.S. Green Cards while Abroad
The Embassy can issue a transportation letter to allow a permanent resident to return to the U.S. in circumstances where their permanent resident card has been lost, stolen, or mutilated.
Since only offices of the Department of State, United States Citizenship, and Immigration Services (USCIS) in the United States can accept and issue replacement Permanent Resident Cards, the transportation letter is issued for the purposes of allowing the person to travel to the U.S. to file the application for replacement of the green card.
A transportation letter can only be issued to permanent residents, who are returning to the United States after an absence of less than one year.
A transportation letter must be applied for in person at the American Embassy and, in order to apply at the American Embassy in London, an appointment must be scheduled for this service. The applicant must provide their current passport, requisite photos, proof that they have been outside of the U.S. for less than one year, and confirmed airline tickets for their trip to return to the U.S.
A transportation letter is valid for a maximum of 30 days and it is therefore crucial that the departure date be within 30 days of the individual’s appointment with USCIS at the American Embassy.
Persons who have been outside the U.S. for more than one year are ineligible for a transportation letter because they may be deemed to have abandoned their permanent resident status.