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What Is a Green Card?
A green card is a legal document that indicates that the holder has been granted permanent resident status. This provides the green card holder with various privileges, such as the right to work in any profession without employer sponsorship and the right to travel in and out of the United States without having to obtain special permission. Green cards are generally granted through one of three avenues:
- Petition for immigration by a loved one through a family-based visa
- Through marriage immigration
- Via employment visa arrangements
What If I Need to Renew a Green Card?
Green cards generally last for 10 years after they have been issued. After this time, they must be renewed. In order to renew a green card, the card holder needs to file Form I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card. Green card renewal needs to occur if the person’s card will be expiring within the next 6 months. However, renewing a green card is not possible before this 6-month period.
Filing fees for Form I-90 are $450, which breaks down to $365 for the form fee and $85 for biometrics. There may be several exceptions to these fee requirements.
Is It Possible to Lose Green Card Privileges?
Permanent resident status and privileges can sometimes be lost. This can occur through:
- Criminal violations committed by the green card holder, which is usually a serious crime such as a felony
- Unauthorized travel or stay outside of the U.S. for extended periods of time
Also, it is possible to receive an infraction for not renewing a green card. Even if you have your card on you, you may receive a fine if it hasn’t been renewed within the proper time. The green card holder should renew expired documents immediately.
Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with Renewing Green Card Privileges?
You may wish to consult an immigration lawyer in order to renew green card privileges. Your attorney can guide you through the process and can help ensure that you have all the proper forms and documentation for the process. If you are involved in any violations, your immigration lawyer will be able to represent you in court to help resolve the issues.
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Last Modified: 05-15-2014 10:01 AM PDT
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