A. General

Benefit requestors may request to renew their USCIS-issued secure identity documents that have expired or replace ones that have been lost, stolen, mutilated, or destroyed, or that contain an error.

The following table provides general information on how to request USCIS reissue certain secure identity documents.

How to Request Replacement or Reissuance of USCIS-Issued Secure Identity Documents

Secure Identity Document

How to Request Reissuance

Permanent resident card

If inside the United States, complete and submit an Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card (Form I-90) to USCIS, with appropriate fees (if required). [1] There are conditions when USCIS may issue an Alien Documentation, Identification & Telecommunications (ADIT) stamp in place of a new Permanent Resident Card (PRC). One such condition may be applying for naturalization at least 6 months before the expiration of the PRC. Permanent residents in this circumstance may contact the USCIS Contact Center for more information on how to obtain an ADIT stamp instead of filing Form I-90.

If outside the United States for less than 1 year, complete and submit an Application for Travel Document (Carrier Documentation) (Form I-131A) for a transportation letter that allows an airline or other transportation carrier to board the lawful permanent resident (LPR). [2] The transportation letter does not replace the PRC. LPRs must complete and submit Form I-90 upon reentry into the United States to obtain a replacement PRC.

Employment authorization document

If inside the United States, complete and submit an Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765), with appropriate fees (if required). [3] For more information on when a new Form I-765 and fee is required, see Employment Authorization Document.

There is no process to seek a replacement employment authorization document, including a combo card, outside the United States.

Reentry permit

If inside the United States, complete and submit an Application for Travel Document (Form I-131), with appropriate fee.

If outside the United States for less than 2 years, complete and submit an Application for Travel Document (Carrier Documentation) (Form I-131A) for a transportation letter that allows an airline or other transportation carrier to board the LPR. [4] The transportation letter does not replace the reentry permit. LPRs must complete and submit Form I-131 upon reentry into the United States to obtain a replacement reentry permit.

Advance parole document

If inside the United States, complete and submit an Application for Travel Document (Form I-131), with appropriate fee. [5] In general, if a requestor applies for advance parole while in the United States, and departs the United States before the advance parole document is issued, the requestor may be found inadmissible to the United States upon return, or even if admitted, may be found to have abandoned his or her application.

There is no process to seek a replacement advance parole document, including a combo card, outside the United States. In these cases, requestors should contact the closest USCIS international office or U.S. embassy or consulate.

Refugee travel document

Whether inside or outside the United States, complete and submit an Application for Travel Document (Form I-131) with appropriate fee.

Citizenship or naturalization certificate

Whether inside or outside the United States, complete and submit an Application for Replacement Naturalization/Citizenship Document (Form N-565). [6] For more information, see Volume 12, Citizenship & Naturalization, Part K, Certificates of Citizenship and Naturalization, Chapter 4, Replacement of Certificate of Citizenship or Naturalization [12 USCIS-PM K.4].

B. Reissuing Non-Deliverable Secure Identity Documents

USCIS receives a number of secure identity documents returned by the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) after attempting delivery. Reasons for return range from USPS error (such as misdirected mail [7] If USCIS personnel determines that a secure identity document (such as a PRC, employment authorization document (EAD), travel document, or naturalization or citizenship certificate) has been lost, misdirected, or tampered with, USCIS personnel must report the unlawful disclosure as a privacy incident. A series of actions and activities must occur to appropriately report, investigate, respond, and mitigate the privacy incident. If a benefit requestor believes his or her secure identity document has been lost, misdirected, or tampered with, he or she should report the incident to the USCIS Contact Center at 1-888-220-5228. or correct address not recognized) to requestor error (such as an untimely address change). Benefit requestors who believe their secure identity documents have been returned to USCIS as non-deliverable may contact the USCIS Contact Center. In some instances, USCIS may be able to attempt a second delivery to the original address.

1. Background

Historically, the management of secure identity documents, including storage, remailing, and destruction, occurred at multiple sites across USCIS with each location having a separate staff performing Post Office Non-Deliverables (PONDS) functions in accordance with local policies. In 2016, USCIS undertook an initiative to reduce the handling of secure identity documents, more clearly define the scope of PONDS duties, and create a more consistent and manageable process. The Office of Intake and Document Production (OIDP) established a centralized PONDS Unit at the Lee’s Summit Production Facility in June 2017, which now oversees all PONDS operations.

Between June 2017 and October 2017, PONDS data showed 95 percent of secure identity documents were successfully re-mailed to requestors within 60 business days of being returned to USCIS. For documents that were unsuccessfully re-mailed, USCIS had previously kept documents for 365 calendar days. In 2018, USCIS began retaining non-deliverable secure identity documents returned to USCIS for 60 business days, or 12 weeks, before destroying them. [8] An economic analysis found that retention of non-deliverable secure identity documents for longer than 60 days costs USCIS more than production of a new identity document.

Before secure identity documents are destroyed, PONDS Unit staff must search all relevant data systems to see if a new address exists. If a new address exists, USCIS re-mails the card to the new address. If no new address exists, USCIS destroys the card and updates its status in applicable systems as destroyed, in accordance with PONDS procedures.

2. Reissuing Secure Identity Documents

In certain circumstances, USCIS reissues secure identity documents if the original identity document was not successfully delivered to the requestor and has been subsequently destroyed. Depending on the scenario, USCIS may require the requestor to file a new form with fee for USCIS to reissue the secure identity document.

New Application and Fees Not Required

Generally, if USCIS-issued secure identity documents were non-deliverable due to USPS errors, USCIS reissues the secure identity document without requiring a new application and fee. The table below provides common (but not comprehensive) non-delivery scenarios involving USPS errors.

Common Non-Delivery Scenarios Involving USPS Errors

Scenario

Example

New Application and Applicable Fee Required?

USPS lost, misdirected, or destroyed mail. [9] For more information, see Find Missing Mail.

N/A

No

USPS incorrectly marked as deceased but requestor is not deceased. Change of address completed by someone other than the requestor (rare).

N/A

No

USPS incorrectly marked yellow label on undeliverable envelope.

USPS label indicates requestor does not reside at address; however, requestor does.

No

USPS did not recognize a good address for requestor.

N/A

No

Generally, if USCIS-issued secure identity documents were non-deliverable due to USCIS or certain other errors, USCIS reissues the secure identity document without requiring a new application and fee. The table below provides common (but not comprehensive) non-delivery scenarios involving USCIS and other errors.

Common Non-Delivery Scenarios Involving USCIS and Other Errors

Scenario

Example

New Application and Applicable Fee Required?

Requestor updated address timely but USCIS incorrectly entered address into data systems.

Requestor enters “123 Presidential Avenue” and USCIS erroneously enters “123 Residential Avenue.

No

Requestor updated address timely but USCIS updated address after 48 hour document production hold and before undeliverable document was returned to USCIS as undeliverable.

N/A

No

Certain USCIS systems errors.

N/A

No

Requestor provides confirmation that mail containing secure identity document was stolen, or mail containing secure identity document was otherwise opened unlawfully by unauthorized person. [10] If USCIS personnel determines that a secure identity document (such as a PRC, EAD, travel document, or naturalization or citizenship certificate) is lost, misdirected, or tampered with, USCIS personnel must report the unlawful disclosure as a privacy incident. A series of actions and activities must occur to appropriately report, investigate, respond, and mitigate the privacy incident. If a benefit requestor believes his or her secure identity document has been lost, misdirected, or tampered with, he or she should report the incident to the USCIS Contact Center at 1-888-220-5228.

N/A

No

New Application and Fees Required

Generally, if USCIS-issued secure identity documents were non-deliverable due to requestor error, USCIS reissues the secure identity document only upon receiving a new application and fee. [11] Unless the requestor qualifies for a fee waiver. See Request for Fee Waiver (Form I-912). The table below provides common (but not comprehensive) non-delivery scenarios involving requestor errors.

Common Non-Delivery Scenarios Involving Requestor Errors

Scenario

Example

New Application and Applicable Fee Required?

Requestor submitted untimely address change.

Requestor updated address well after the 10-day timeframe set by INA 265 and after USCIS mailed his or her secure identity document, but the secure identity document was not returned to USCIS as undeliverable. [12] If USCIS personnel determines that a secure identity document (such as a PRC, EAD, travel document, or naturalization or citizenship certificate) is lost, misdirected, or tampered with, USCIS personnel must report the unlawful disclosure as a privacy incident. A series of actions and activities must occur to appropriately report, investigate, respond, and mitigate the privacy incident. If a benefit requestor believes his or her secure identity document has been lost, misdirected, or tampered with, he or she should report the incident to the USCIS Contact Center at 1-888-220-5228.

Requestor updated address after his or her secure identity document was returned to USCIS as undeliverable and destroyed.

Yes, requestor must resubmit completed application with fee.

Requestor updated address timely, but gave incomplete or incorrect address.

Instead of “123 Main Street,requestor entered “Main Street 123” or “213 Main Street.”

Requestor omitted apartment or suite number or included incorrect apartment or suite number.

Requestor misspelled a part of the address, such as “123 Brandway” instead of “123 Broadway.”

Requestor listed the wrong state or zip code.

Requestor provided an invalid USPS address.

Yes, requestor must resubmit completed application with fee.

Requestor provided future address, not current address.

N/A

Yes, requestor must resubmit completed application with fee.

Requestor did not accept mail.

N/A

Yes, requestor must resubmit completed application with fee.

C. Determining Cause of Error

USCIS determines the cause of the error through USCIS system checks. Each system history contains the date, time, and responsible party of any address update that occurs. These systems indicate when the document was produced or if it was returned. If a USCIS representative is unable to determine the cause of the error or the scenario does not fall into any of the tables listed above, the officer should consult a supervisor.

Footnotes


1. [^]

There are conditions when USCIS may issue an Alien Documentation, Identification & Telecommunications (ADIT) stamp in place of a new Permanent Resident Card (PRC). One such condition may be applying for naturalization at least 6 months before the expiration of the PRC. Permanent residents in this circumstance may contact the USCIS Contact Center for more information on how to obtain an ADIT stamp instead of filing Form I-90.

2. [^]

The transportation letter does not replace the PRC. LPRs must complete and submit Form I-90 upon reentry into the United States to obtain a replacement PRC.

3. [^]

For more information on when a new Form I-765 and fee is required, see Employment Authorization Document.

4. [^]

The transportation letter does not replace the reentry permit. LPRs must complete and submit Form I-131 upon reentry into the United States to obtain a replacement reentry permit.

5. [^]

In general, if a requestor applies for advance parole while in the United States, and departs the United States before the advance parole document is issued, the requestor may be found inadmissible to the United States upon return, or even if admitted, may be found to have abandoned his or her application.

6. [^]

For more information, see Volume 12, Citizenship & Naturalization, Part K, Certificates of Citizenship and Naturalization, Chapter 4, Replacement of Certificate of Citizenship or Naturalization [12 USCIS-PM K.4].

7. [^]

If USCIS personnel determines that a secure identity document (such as a PRC, employment authorization document (EAD), travel document, or naturalization or citizenship certificate) has been lost, misdirected, or tampered with, USCIS personnel must report the unlawful disclosure as a privacy incident. A series of actions and activities must occur to appropriately report, investigate, respond, and mitigate the privacy incident. If a benefit requestor believes his or her secure identity document has been lost, misdirected, or tampered with, he or she should report the incident to the USCIS Contact Center at 1-888-220-5228.

8. [^]

An economic analysis found that retention of non-deliverable secure identity documents for longer than 60 days costs USCIS more than production of a new identity document.

9. [^]

For more information, see Find Missing Mail.

10. [^]

If USCIS personnel determines that a secure identity document (such as a PRC, EAD, travel document, or naturalization or citizenship certificate) is lost, misdirected, or tampered with, USCIS personnel must report the unlawful disclosure as a privacy incident. A series of actions and activities must occur to appropriately report, investigate, respond, and mitigate the privacy incident. If a benefit requestor believes his or her secure identity document has been lost, misdirected, or tampered with, he or she should report the incident to the USCIS Contact Center at 1-888-220-5228.

11. [^]

Unless the requestor qualifies for a fee waiver. See Request for Fee Waiver (Form I-912).

12. [^]

If USCIS personnel determines that a secure identity document (such as a PRC, EAD, travel document, or naturalization or citizenship certificate) is lost, misdirected, or tampered with, USCIS personnel must report the unlawful disclosure as a privacy incident. A series of actions and activities must occur to appropriately report, investigate, respond, and mitigate the privacy incident. If a benefit requestor believes his or her secure identity document has been lost, misdirected, or tampered with, he or she should report the incident to the USCIS Contact Center at 1-888-220-5228.