A Green Card is the identification card that permits its holder to work and live in the United States permanently. Behind this privilege, however, Green Card holders have their responsibility to bring it with them at all times while making sure that the details in their card are up-to-date.
While the cards indeed bear the name “United States of America Permanent Resident,” it does not mean that its validity is eternal. From time to time, green card holders need to renew or replace their existing cards. Here is what you ought to know about Green Card Renewal.
When to renew your green card?
Generally, the green cards contain two dates; one pertains to the issuance date, while the other signifies when the card’s expiration date.
Most cards are valid for up to ten years. However, it’s recommended to file for Form I-90 for a green card renewal as early as six months before the card’s validity expires.
While the card owners will not lose their status as permanent residents after the card has expired, they still need to renew their card as soon as possible.
Section 264 of the Immigration and Nationality Act is quite strict on enforcing the permanent resident’s obligation of maintaining the validity of the card at all times. Failure to comply with the immigration requirements may lead to a fine or even imprisonment.
Green card owners who are outside the country when the card expires should contact the nearest US Citizen and Immigration Services, US Consulate, or the US port of entry before submitting the renewal form.
Moreover, the advanced technology makes it possible for residents to apply for a green card renewal or replacement online without much hassle.
What are the other reasons that call for the card renewal or replacement?
Stated are the points to consider when renewing or replacing the card.
- The card is stolen, lost, or damaged.
- The owner never received his or her card even though the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has already issued it.
- The card is partially damaged.
- There are incorrect details on the card caused by USCIS errors.
- The name or other personal information of the holder has changed since the released of the card.
- The permanent resident turns 14 years old, for which they must apply for a brand-new card as required by the law.
- The card owners take up commuter status.
- Permanent residents with a commuter status move back to the United States and wish to re-establish their residence in the country.
How long will the renewal process take?
Similar to any other government form application, filing for a card renewal can be taxing. After adequately filing the Form I-90, it might take about ten months to one year before the card is received. Sometimes, it could take even longer.
Nevertheless, some online renewal processes only take a few minutes and come with a simple step-by-step procedure that minimises mistakes.
Green card, with its official name as Lawful Permanent Resident Card, signifies that its holders can legally stay and work in the United States for as long as they like. It’s an essential part of the holders’ identity. Thus, permanent residents need to make sure that their cards are valid and up-to-date at all times.
*This is a collaborative post