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Instructions for Renewal of Green Card

08th February 2011
By Matthew Duran in Immigration Law
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The permanent resident card or green card is Form I-551; it is the evidence of a legal right to live and work in the United States. The validity period of a green card is ten years. The expiration date is printed on the front side of card. A green card must be renewed within six months before the expiration date to maintain permanent residency in USA. The Green card can be renewed by filing Form I-90 with USCIS.

If you are traveling during the last 6 months of the validated time, you must return back to the US before the card expires.

If you do not return to the US before the card expires, you must contact the nearest American Consulate, USCIS office, or Port of Entry, before attempting to file Form I-90 for a green card.

Depending on the reason why you are applying for a renewed status, there may be different forms to use that you need to know about. Your card may have been stolen, lost or mutilated, or you may have changed your name for any particular reason. Even a change of address requires a specialized renewal form, so if any of these have affected your status, check the form names and numbers before filling them out.

Things to be kept in mind when renewal is delayed

There are some things that can happen if your renewal is delayed. First of all, you will not lose your status as a permanent residence of the U.S. if your Green Card expires. However, getting a job or benefits, or entering the States from abroad will be quite difficult, because you need to prove that you are in the country legally. Your temporary proof of status serves its purpose for you as you await your renew Green Card.

How to Renew the Card

The best way to know how to renew a Green Card is to apply to replace a permanent resident card, which can be done online. Form I-90 is used for filing green card renewal application. A form I-90 can be downloaded from the official USCIS website.

Also, you will not be penalized if your Card is past due. Simply fill out the needed forms, pay the fee and wait for the process to be completed.

Fees for Renewing the Card

The charges for the green card renewal are $110, and if you have any other special needs to do with your card, additional fees may be required. It is best that you set aside this amount and a little extra some time before your card expires to save you from last minute rush.

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