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Renewing Your Green Card: A Complete Guide for All

Renewing Your Green Card: A Complete Guide for All. Maintaining an up-to-date green card is not just a formality—it is an essential responsibility with immense benefits. With this precious document, you solidify your permanent resident status, ensuring seamless re-entry into the U.S. and empowering you to pursue a fulfilling career. By keeping your green card in check, you embrace the privileges and rights that come with it, enabling you to contribute to society, create lasting connections, and embark on an exciting journey in the land of opportunity.

Continue reading to learn everything you need to know about green card renewal and how Citizenship Selfie can help make the process as seamless as possible for you.

When to Renew a Green Card

Timing is everything regarding renewing your green card, ensuring a seamless immigration experience without unnecessary complications. To navigate this process successfully, it is wise to initiate the renewal procedure at least six months before the expiration date on your card. However, be mindful not to start too early or leave it too late, as both scenarios can potentially lead to various issues.

By proactively renewing your green card within the recommended time frame, you take charge of your immigration journey. This strategic approach allows ample time for processing, minimizes stress, and offers a buffer for unforeseen circumstances. Stay ahead of the game and ensure a smooth transition by adhering to the advisable timeline for green card renewal.


The Consequences of Delay: Renewing Your Green Card After Expiration

Failing to renew your green card in a timely manner can have significant consequences, leaving you without valid proof of your permanent resident status. While your actual status as a permanent resident remains unaffected, the expired card poses challenges regarding important aspects of your life. Here are some key areas where an expired green card can create hurdles:

  1. Employment Verification: Employers are obligated to verify your eligibility to work in the United States, and an expired green card cannot serve as valid proof, potentially hindering your job prospects.
  2. Travel Restrictions: An unexpired green card is vital for smooth re-entry into the United States after international travel. Without it, you may encounter complications and delays at the border.
  3. Driver’s License Renewal: Many states require a valid and unexpired green card to renew your driver’s license. Without it, you may face difficulties in maintaining your driving privileges.
  4. Home Financing Challenges: When applying for a home loan or refinancing, lenders typically require proof of permanent residence, which an expired green card cannot provide. This may impede your ability to secure a mortgage or refinance your home.

To avoid these obstacles and maintain your ability to establish your identity and rights as a permanent resident, it is crucial to prioritize the timely renewal of your green card. Don’t let the expiration date catch you off guard; stay proactive and ensure a smooth continuation of your life in the United States.

How Our Immigration Lawyers from Citizenship Selfie Can Assist You

Navigating the complex process of renewing a green card can be daunting, but the immigration lawyers at Citizenship Selfie are here to support you every step of the way. Here’s how our team can help you:

Application to Renew a Card

When renewing your green card, the first step is to file Form I-90, or the Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card. Despite its name, this form is also used for green card renewal purposes. 

While the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) provides online filing for Form I-90, it’s crucial to know that errors, oversights, or omissions can often lead to processing delays and requests for additional evidence. Unfortunately, these delays can significantly extend the overall processing time, adding several months to the renewal process. To ensure a smooth and efficient process, submitting a well-prepared application package is highly recommended.

This is where Citizenship Selfie can assist you by providing you with immigration attorneys who help you simplify this process. You are guaranteed USCIS approval by working with us, acting as an insurance policy to expedite your green card renewal.

We understand the importance of a hassle-free renewal process, and our goal is to provide you with the guidance and resources you need to navigate it successfully. With Citizenship Selfie, you can confidently renew your green card and continue enjoying the benefits of permanent residency in the United States.

Renewing a Green Card Outside the United States

If you find yourself outside of the United States, your green card is due for renewal. Unfortunately, you cannot initiate the renewal process while abroad. This is primarily because renewing a green card typically involves a biometric appointment, which requires physical presence in the United States. Additionally, the USCIS only mails the renewed card to a U.S. address. Therefore, you must file the renewal application once you have returned to the United States.

However, if you have been outside the United States for a period of less than one year (or up to two years with a re-entry permit), you can likely return to the U.S. even if your green card has expired. It is advisable to check with your airline beforehand to confirm their policy regarding boarding with an expired green card. 

In most cases, U.S. Customs and Border Protection allows entry with an expired green card, and many airlines also accommodate this. However, if the airline does not accept your expired green card, you may need to file Form I-131A at a U.S. embassy or consulate to request special carrier documentation.


On the other hand, if you have been absent from the United States for one year or more without obtaining a re-entry permit, you have likely abandoned your permanent resident status. In such cases, it is important to consult with an immigration lawyer from Citizenship Selfie to evaluate your options. 

Our immigration lawyers can determine if you may be eligible for a returning resident visa, allowing you to regain your permanent resident status. If you are not eligible for a returning resident visa, you must go through the process of reapplying for a green card.

Navigating the complexities of renewing a green card outside the United States can be challenging, but our experienced immigration lawyers are here to assist you throughout the process. Contact Citizenship Selfie for personalized guidance and support tailored to your situation.

Supporting Documents for Green Card Renewal Application

In addition to Form I-90, you must submit several documents supporting your application. The specific supporting documents required depend on your answers in Form I-90. For example, if you have undergone a name change due to marriage or divorce, you must provide proof of the legal name change, such as a marriage certificate or divorce decree.


Citizenship Selfie and your completed Form I-90 provide personalized filing instructions tailored to your application. These instructions guide you on the necessary supporting documents, how to organize your application, and where to mail it.

What to Do if Your Green Card Application Is Denied

If your Form I-90 for green card renewal is denied, it can be challenging. However, a process is in place to challenge the decision and seek reconsideration from USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services).


To begin, it is crucial to understand the reason for the denial. USCIS may deny green card renewal applications for various reasons, such as criminal offenses, previous immigration violations, or submitting incorrect forms. By understanding the specific basis for the denial, you can better address and overcome the issues in your motion for reconsideration.


The next step is submitting a motion to request USCIS reconsider its decision. This motion should include a persuasive argument supported by relevant evidence and documentation to counter the reasons for the denial. It is essential to present a strong case that addresses any concerns USCIS raises and provides compelling reasons why your green card renewal should be approved.


Navigating the motion for reconsideration process can be complex and requires a comprehensive understanding of immigration law and USCIS procedures. That’s where the expertise of an immigration attorney becomes invaluable. By working with an experienced immigration lawyer, you can benefit from their knowledge and guidance to formulate the best response and increase your chances of a successful outcome.


At Citizenship Selfie, our team of immigration lawyers is well-versed in handling green card renewal denials. We can provide personalized assistance, carefully analyze the reasons for the denial, and help you develop a compelling motion for reconsideration. We aim to support you throughout the process and advocate for your rights, ensuring the best possible chance of getting your green card renewal approved.

Processing Time for Green Card Renewal

The processing time for green card renewal applications can vary. Still, it generally takes several months for most permanent residents to receive a new card after submitting Form I-90. USCIS processes all I-90 applications at the Potomac Service Center.


Although the wait time may seem lengthy, there’s a significant aspect to consider. Once USCIS accepts your application for processing, they will send you a receipt notice. This notice serves as proof that your application is being reviewed and extends the validity of your green card for an additional 24 months beyond its current expiration date. Therefore, you can continue using your expired green card with the receipt notice as valid documentation until your new green card arrives.


It’s important to always keep the receipt notice and expired green card with you to demonstrate your legal status as a permanent resident while the renewal process is underway. USCIS understands the delays in processing and provides this extension to ensure that individuals maintain their lawful residency status during the waiting period.


Final Recap

Renewing your green card is a vital responsibility that grants you numerous benefits and opportunities in the United States. To ensure a seamless renewal process, it’s crucial to initiate the application within the recommended timeframe, avoiding unnecessary complications. 

If you find yourself outside the U.S. when your green card expires, you must wait until you return to file the renewal application. However, if you have been absent for an extended period without a reentry permit, it’s important to consult with an immigration lawyer to explore your options. Citizenship Selfie’s team of immigration attorneys is dedicated to assisting you throughout the renewal process, providing guidance on the required documents, and supporting you in case of a denial. 

While the processing time for green card renewal can take several months, USCIS provides a receipt notice that extends the validity of your expired green card, allowing you to maintain your lawful residency status until your new card arrives. Trust Citizenship Selfie to make your green card renewal journey as smooth and successful as possible.


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