Are you thinking of renewing your Green Card? or you’re wondering how to go about renewing green card? If that is you, then you’re in the right place.
In today’s article, we’ll be discussing green card renewal, the process for renewing a green card in the U.S, and also the documents you’ll need for renewing a green card. This article is going to be a lengthy one, I’ll advise you to bookmark this page while you read.
So before we dive straight into the process of renewing a green card, let us look at some essential things you need to know about green cards.
What Is a Green Card?
The Green Card is a very important document that is known as a permanent resident card. This document serves as an identity document that shows that an individual or the holder of the document has permanent residency in the United States.
When a person is in possession of a green card, it simply means that the individual is a lawful permanent resident of the U.S.
According to Wikipedia. As of 2019, there are over 13.9 million green card holders and about 9.1 million are eligible to become United State citizens. With this, approximately 65,000 of them serve in the U.S. Armed forces.
With the Green Card, anyone who is a holder of the card is entitled to apply for U.S citizenship after showing a preponderance of the evidence that they, among other things, have continuously resided in the United States for one to five years and are persons of good moral character.
Anyone who is 18 years younger automatically derives U.S. citizenship if the individual has at least one U.S. citizen’s parents.
Have you wondered why it is called the green card?
The card is known as the “Green Card” because of its historical greenish color. The card was formerly called a “certificate of alien registration” or an “alien registration receipt card”. Absent exceptional circumstances, immigrants who are 18 years of age or older could spend up to 30 days in jail for not carrying their green cards.
Green card applications are decided by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), but in some cases, an immigration judge or a member of the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), acting on behalf of the U.S. Attorney General, may grant permanent residency in the course of removal proceedings.
Any authorized federal judge may do the same by signing and issuing an injunction. Immigrant workers who want a green card can apply using form I-140.
Why You Need a Green Card
As an immigrant or alien staying in the United State, you’ll need a green card as a legal document that shows that you have a permit to stay in the united state and work as a permanent resident. With the card, you’re lawfully allowed to work, get a job and live in the united state so long as you’re a law-abiding citizen.
With this card, you’re open to so many opportunities and privileges that could only be accessible to U.S born citizens.
How Long Does It Take To Processing a Green Card?
The processing time or duration for a United State Green Card is determined by the type of green card an applicant is applying for. In normal circumstances, a green card processing time takes an average of 7 to 56 months depending on where an applicant is applying from.
When you’re applying for a green card from within the U.S, the process is way easier and fast compared to when you’re applying from outside the United State.
For parents and minor children, of U.S citizens applying from within the United States through adjustment of status, the wait is currently 21-38 months. For spouses of U.S. green card holders, other relatives of U.S. citizens, and employment-based green cards, the wait can be much longer, typically two years or more.
But in the case where you’re applying for a Green Card from outside the U.S, you’ll need to wait for approximately 7-34 months. All of the green card categories are usually subject to country caps, and wait times vary dramatically.
Importance Or Benefit Of a Green Card
Green Card plays a very vital role in the life of its holder. With the vast opportunities in a place like the United State, anyone can enjoy the privilege of working and making a living in the united state.
This card comes with a lot of advantages. But the primary advantage of having a green card is the fact that it allows you to permanently live and work in the United State and become a citizen of the united state after some years.
All you need to be eligible as a U.S citizen is by staying there for five years or getting married to a U.S citizen.
Documents Required For Renewing Green Card
As proof that you are eligible for renewal, you often simply need to present a copy of your green card, which has expired or is about to expire.
In another way, if it was misplaced and nowhere to be found, stolen, or it was damaged and you need a new Green Card for a different reason you must need to provide other documentation like any copy of government-issued identification which contains your information or data such as your name, date of birth (DOB), signature and photograph.
How To Renew Your Green Card Online
Renewing your green card online is very easy and straightforward. To renew your card online, simply follow the simple steps below.
- Create a USCIS online account.
- Complete Form I-90.
- Upload required evidence, such as a copy of your expired or soon-to-expire green card.
- Review and digitally sign your application.
- Pay the government fees (if required).
- Submit your application, and wait for your new green card.
When to Renew Your Green Card
The expiry time of a U.S green card is 10 years. For any reason, if your card expires, then you’ll need to renew or replace it.
For any green card that is about to expire within six months, you need to make sure you hurry up and renew it in other to avoid any future problems.
To renew your green card, simply follow the steps below:
How to renew your green card
- Complete a renewal application either online or by mail.
- Gather your supporting documents.
- Pay the government fees, if required.
- Submit your application, and wait for your new green card.
When your green card is about to expire, it doesn’t mean that your citizenship or your permit in the U.S will be revoked. You’re already a permanent resident of the U.S unless you commit a crime that will require you to be deported.
When this card is expired, it means it is high time you get the latest version of the green card which comes with an improved design. This card will serve as a means of identifying yourself in any place in the United State.
How Much Is The Green Card Renewal Fees?
A family-based Green Card fees cost $1,760 when an applicant is applying from within the United State. For applicants living outside the U.S, it cost $1,200. The $1,200 does not include other logistics such as the cost of the medical exams, because that varies depending on the provider.