Temporary I-551 Stamps and Machine-Readable Immigrant Visas (MRIVs) play an important role in the U.S. immigration process, providing evidence of permanent resident status. This blog post will offer a detailed breakdown of these critical components, their significance for both new immigrants and employers, and the proper procedures for handling them.

Temporary I-551 Stamps

The Temporary I-551 Stamp is issued by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) when a new immigrant enters the United States. This stamp in the foreign passport serves as a mark of the individual’s permanent resident status and includes the date of entry.

Features of Temporary I-551 Stamps

  • Status Confirmation: It indicates that the immigrant has attained permanent resident status.
  • Validity: It’s valid as evidence for 1 year from the date of admission.
  • Endorsement: If the stamp is endorsed and is near but not on the immigrant visa, it’s still considered valid.

Machine-Readable Immigrant Visas (MRIVs)

MRIVs, typically imprinted with the text “UPON ENDORSEMENT SERVES AS TEMPORARY I-551 EVIDENCING PERMANENT RESIDENCE FOR 1 YEAR,” are another essential part of the immigration process.

Features of MRIVs

  • Proof of Status: The foreign passport with the MRIV stands as proof of permanent residence status for 1 year from the date of admission.
  • Employer Responsibility: Employers should treat the MRIV as an acceptable List A document valid for 1 year from the date of admission, even if it’s issued without the statement “FOR 1 YEAR.”


Temporary I-551 Stamps and MRIVs are essential instruments in the U.S. immigration system, providing critical validation of permanent residence status for new immigrants. Both immigrants and employers must understand their proper use and interpretation, ensuring a smooth transition and compliance with U.S. immigration law.

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