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A green card, or permanent resident card, gives a foreign national lawful immigration status which allows them to live and work in the United States. For a regular permanent resident, the green card is valid for 10 years. You can start your green card renewal application as early as 6 months before the expiration date. If your valid green card has been lost, stolen or damaged, you will also need to replace your green card as this could be a problem for getting a job or traveling outside of the United States.
This process does not apply to expiring two year green cards if the green card was obtained through marriage. Please refer to removal of conditions in this case.
Green Card Renewal or Replacement Process
The green card renewal or replacement process might vary based on the reasons of replacement, applicants should identify which category does the conditions falls into before applying, the basic process is as follow:
- Application to replace permanent resident card mailed or e-filing to the USCIS along with all fees and supporting documents
- Notice of Action1 – Notice that application to replace permanent resident card has been received
- Notice of Action 2 – Instructions for applicant to attend biometrics appointment
- Applicant attends biometrics appointment
- Notice of Action 3 – Receive approval notice and green card
* In some situations, applicants might receive interview notice prior of final decision.
Green Card Renewal or Replacement Timeline
As of 2018, the average time from initial filing of the I-90 Application to the moment of final adjudication is approximately 8 to 10 months from start to finish on average. Keep in mind that the specific circumstances of each applicant can add to that estimate.
Some of the factors that can affect your timeline are:
- The current USCIS workload
- Errors on the application or missing documentation
- Failure to attend biometrics or interview appointments
Note that most delays in processing result from missing evidentiary documents (and subsequent requests for evidence, aka. RFEs) and/or errors made on the official forms.
Costs & Fees
|USCIS Filing Fee||$455|
|RapidVisa Service Fee||$200 (or $300 for Premium)|
|Total Cost (Paid in Full Price)||$740 (or $840 for Premium)|
|Total Cost (Payment Plan Price)||$168/mo. For 6 Months |
(Includes USCIS, Biometrics & Premium)
Note that if the replacement reason is government’s fault (ie. USCIS issued the green card but you never received it or the green card you received has incorrect information because of government’s error), the USCIS might waive both the filing fee and biometrics fee.
Approval or Denial of Application and Receipt of Green Card
If the I-90 application is approved, the applicant will be notified and will receive his or her I-551 green card within 1 to 2 weeks (typically). If your application is denied, you will receive a letter stating the reasons of denial. Unfortunately, you cannot submit an appeal, however you can submit a motion to reopen/reconsider if denied.