Is your green card going to expire?
Here are the steps below to renew or replace your green card.
FIRST, it is very important to know: Carrying an expired green card does not mean you have lost your permanent resident status in any way. You may, however, face difficulty if you leave the U.S. and then attempt to re-enter with an expired green card. Also, you may face difficulties applying for employment and certain benefits. That is why it is important to renew your green card.
If your green card is about to expire:
Check the date of expiration on your green card. This date is generally printed at the bottom of your green card. If your green card is close to its expiration date, complete and submit form I-90 within six months of its expiration date. This form is available on the USCIS website and can be found here: http://www.uscis.gov/e-filing-i-90. This form can be completed online with a payment of $450 made to the government.
PLEASE NOTE: This form I-90 does NOT apply to applicants who are on CR1 (Conditional Residence) status. In that case, the applicant must complete and submit form I-751 within 90 days of the expiration of his/her CR1 status. If that person became a conditional resident based on financial investment in a U.S. business, then that person needs to file Form I-829, Petition by Entrepeneur to Remove Conditions.
Some weeks after submitting your application, you will receive a notice to appear for a biometrics appointment. If any crimes are found on your record that could render you deportable, you could be placed in deportation proceedings and then lose your right to be a U.S. resident.
After the application process, the government will mail your new green card in the mail. In the meantime, you will likely be provided with temporary documents that prove your permanent residency while awaiting your green card.
If your green card has already expired:
Apply as soon as possible to renew your green card as soon as possible by following the steps above.
Another alternative (and often recommended for legal permanent residents) is to apply for citizenship. Once a legal permanent resident becomes a U.S. citizen, that person's citizenship can never be taken away from him/her. Further, that person can never be deported if s/he is a U.S. Citizen. Once your citizenship application (N-400) is on file with USCIS, USCIS will likely not mind if you currently possess an expired green card.
However, if you are in a position where you need to change jobs, apply for any benefits, or you travel outside the U.S., it is highly advisable to apply to renew a green card, for the reasons set forth above.