I-131 Re-entry Permit process

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We claimed our landing in US (drove in) as permanent residents in Feb 2011 and came back to Canada the following day. I need to prolong my stay in Canada because of more than 1 reasons (job commitment, citizenship application, and early mortgage termination clause with the mortgage company). Hence I am considering applying for I-131 Re-entry Permit.

It was employer sponsored immigration. I was with the same employer under H1 for several years. (I guess I need to first of check with the employer if he is going to let me stay in Canada for another year)

Few Questions for Experts/Experienced personnel:

- The I-131 instruction Handout states that: "If you stay outside US for less than 1 year, you are not required to apply for Re-entry Permit."As I am so close to US (few hours away from the border), do I need to apply for Re-Entry Permit. The only reason I was thinking of this was so that I don't have any unexpected questions/issue thrown to me at the time of crossing the border (as I won't be working for the employer who sponsored me).

- Could you guys provide me a timeline on how much time the Biometrics appointment letter takes to come in if I file an Expedite Request?

- The instruction sheet also mentions that "... if an applicant departs the United States before the biometrics are collected, the application may be denied". Does that really mean that I can't come into US, file the application, go back to Canada and fly in again for Biometrics?

- My final home base is the Washington DC/Virginia area. Could I file for the I-131 in California and appear for the Biometrics in California or any other state closer to Canada?

- Do I need to file an application for 1 year child as well? I presume so...

- Is I-551 same as the Green Card?

- Should I forget about I-131 altogether and think about applying for Returning Resident's Visa from the US Embassy (when I am ready to move)?



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