Complete Guide to the Process of Replacing or Renewing Green Card
The process of renewing green cards can be fairly straightforward with the filing of form I-90, a fee, and supporting documentation. Learn everything you need to know here.
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Whether you are in Atlanta or anywhere in the United States, Tadeo & Silva is able to take your immigration case and give you the best results your case can get in the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCI). Our attorneys have managed cases from clients all over the country and internationally.
What You Need to Know About Renewing a Green Card
Once you have become a long-term citizen of the U.S. by getting a Green Card, your status as a lawful permanent resident does not end. However, the law requires that you renew your Green Card at specific times.
Permits issued between 1979 and 1988 do not have an expiration date. Any Green Cards issued after those years, however, do. After that specific time period, immigrants have to submit a green card renewal application. This regulation was established to keep photos and info current on all permanent residents, similar to passports and driver’s licenses. Green Cards need to be updated every ten years. So if yours has expired or will expire within six months, it is time for renewing your Green Card.
Tadeo & Silva Immigration Attorneys can provide additional information and walk you through the process.
What If Your Green Card Expires?
Unless you commit a deportable offense or remain out of the country too long, an expired Green Card does not indicate you are no longer a legal U.S. permanent resident, as you keep that immigration status for life. It simply means that you need a new permanent resident card with the current modifications. A valid green card will make sure you can continue to live and work legally in the United States and to return to the United States if you take a trip abroad.
It is important to pay attention to the expiration date of your permanent residence card, so you can prepare ahead to satisfy renewal requirements and maintain your lawful permanent resident status, especially if you are planning to temporarily leave the country.
An expired Green Card could prohibit you from returning to the United States or carrying out other regular activities, such as getting a new job. Plus, you need to carry it with you at all times, or you risk facing misdemeanor charges. Like any criminal charge, a misdemeanor can present challenges for you later when you file for U.S. citizenship. If that happens, hire reputable legal representation to assist you.
The Green Card Renewal Process
Permanent residents with a 10-year permanent resident card should begin the Green Card renewal process right away if their card has expired or is scheduled to within six months. It is important to note, though, that you should not try to apply too early, or U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) might reject your application and keep your filing fees.
Here is the renewal green card process:
- Complete the form for renewal. This can be done on either USCIS online account.
- Compile all necessary support documents.
- If needed, pay the filing fee.
- Submit the application either online or by mail.
- Wait for your renewed green card to arrive.
In many cases, especially if you have allowed your conditional permanent status to lapse, it may be necessary to retain the services of Abogados de Migracion en Atlanta. If English is not your first language, bilingual attorneys can more easily explain the necessary steps to help you legally remain in the U.S.
If you select a private company to take care of this immigrant visa job, you will have to send the completed government forms directly to USCIS and any other government agency. You will have to take care of the other supporting documents on your own. That’s why it is recommended to consult with an attorney first.
When Do You Need to Begin the Process for USCIS Green Card Renewal?
If you are currently outside of the U.S., it’s even more important to be aware of the Green Card renewal timeline. If you are a green card holder and you have been outside the U.S. for less than one year, and your permit will expire within six months, but you will be able to return to the United States before it expires, then renew your Green Card as soon as you return to the United States.
If it has expired, and you did not obtain renewal before leaving the United States, you should contact the closest U.S. consulate or port of entry (POE) to make them aware of your scenario before applying to renew a green card.
Renew Green Card to Retain Legal Status
If you are a permanent resident who has finished Form I-551, your permit lasts for ten years, and you are qualified to begin the process to renew your Green Card within six months of your expiration date.
Bear in mind that if you are a conditional lawful permanent resident, you need to utilize Form I-75, which is the Petition to Remove the Conditions on Residence. The function of this form is to eliminate the conditions set on your status. Directions for this form are on the USCIS site.
It is necessary to frequently check the status of your renewal application. If there are any concerns or mistakes made or if your application is rejected, you need to know how to remedy this as quickly as possible. It takes up to 72-hours for an application to be registered on the site. If you have sent your application and your e-file invoice number has not appeared after 72-hours, call an agent through the USCIS for more details or contact an immigration office in Atlanta for additional assistance.
How to Renew Green Card or Replace It
To renew your Green Card, you initially need to complete a Form I-90 (formally called the “Application to Change Long-term Citizen Card“). This confuses some people, but the same application is used for both permit renewals and replacements.
When you bring an application to restore your Green Card to the USCIS office, bring an extra picture, so a stamped Form I-94 specifying your evidence of status can be provided to you. You will get a letter if your application has been rejected. You will not have the ability to appeal to this. Nevertheless, you can send a request to reassess the decision.
This form should have additional and new evidence to make certain your case passes. It needs to develop the case that you were rejected due to inaccurate or lack of proof. If your application is rejected, retain an experienced immigration lawyer to help you navigate the situation and help you find the holes in your documentation.
Knowing Which Form to File
Since the Department of Homeland Security provides so many different forms that are a part of the Green Card renewal process, it can be confusing to know which form serves which purpose. Fortunately, an immigration attorney can help guide you through the potentially stress-inducing amounts of paperwork that are associated with maintaining your status as a legal resident of the United States.
Form I-90: This is the form that is provided for permanent residents and those permanent residents with commuter status that needs to either renew their card or replace a lost or stolen card. It is important to note that if you are a Conditional Permanent Resident, you are not allowed to use this form to apply for card renewal. Conditional Permanent Residents, for instance, those that have achieved CR1, CR2, CF1, or CR2 status that are in the United States due to marriage or entrepreneurship, do not need this form to renew an expiring card.
Form I-551: Form I-551 is the legal name of the actual Green Card itself. If you look in the upper-left corner of your current green card, you will see “Form I-551” printed in small font.
Form I-751: One of the most important forms of the immigration process, Form I-751 is used by a conditional resident that is seeking to remove the conditions associated with his or her residency. The terms of your residency dictate whether or not this is the form you need to file, though. If you are a U.S. resident with green card status based on marriage to a U.S. citizen. Typically, form I-751 should be filed in conjunction with your spouse, but there are exceptions to the spouse being a part of the filing process.
When Your Spouse Doesn’t Have to be on Form I-751:
- Spouse subsequently died after you entered the marriage in good faith
- You entered the marriage in good faith but have become the victim of abuse or cruelty
- You entered the marriage in good faith, but the marriage was dissolved through annulment or divorce
- The termination of your status provided by this form would result in extreme hardship
Other Things You Need to Care About…
While there are certainly more forms that are a part of the immigration process than the ones listed above, these are some of the most common. Tragically, failure to fill these forms out in their entirety or providing incorrect information, either through malice or simple error, can have a negative impact on your status as a legal resident of the United States.
Fortunately, our team of immigration attorneys is well-versed in filling out these forms and ensuring that you maintain your legal status in the United States. While these forms are provided online by the Department of Homeland Security, you should not try to fill them out on your own. Let us guide you through this process and make sure that your residency is completely legal on your path to permanent citizenship.
Green Card Renewal Fee
Green Card Renewal Form
The Green Card Renewal Form or immigration forms can be found here.
All of the forms necessary for various Green Card renewal situations can be confusing, but don’t worry. A reputable immigration law firm will be able to provide the necessary services you require and walk you through the process.
Green Card Renewal Timeline
As previously mentioned, the Green Card renewal timeline is every ten years. While the procedure can appear simple, you should leave yourself adequate time to finish the renewal procedure. If there are mistakes in your application that need to be corrected or may draw concerns regarding your status, you will have built a window of time to finish it effectively before when your card expires.
With complex United States immigration laws and changes occurring often, you may want to get advice from a qualified lawyer while restoring your status. Tadeo & Silva can quickly assist you or your loved one in replacing or renewing a Green Card to maintain lawful permanent resident status.
Green Card Renewal Status
To complete your Green Card renewal, you generally just need a copy of your expired or soon-to-expire Green Card as evidence that you qualify. Fees and other forms may be necessary, depending on your individual situation.
In order to check on your Green Card renewal status, navigate to the USCIS website’s case status search.
Tadeo & Silva Immigration Attorneys
3555 Koger Blvd Suite 120,
Duluth, GA 30096
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