The best way to know how to renew a Green Card is to apply to replace a permanent resident card, which can be done online. A number of requirements are needed of you before renewing your Green Card, as shown below.
Apply for renewal within 6 months of expiration
It is recommended that you fill out your renewal form at least 6 months before the expiry date. This makes it possible for you to receive your card in good time, so that you do not undergo much hassles in the process. While your card is being renewed, you will receive a temporary proof of status, which is evidence of your residence in the U.S. while your card is being processed. The temporary proof of status lasts for a year, and you will receive your renewed status 10 to 12 months after your application.
Know the different renewal forms if your status has changed
Depending on the reason why you are applying for a renewed status, there may be different forms to use that you need to know about. Your card may have been stolen, lost or mutilated, or you may have changed your name for any particular reason. Even a change of address requires a specialized renewal form, so if any of these have affected your status, check the form names and numbers before filling them out.
Get the renewal fee beforehand
The charges for renewing a Green Card is $110, and if you have any other special needs to do with your card, additional fees may be required. It is best that you set aside this amount and a little extra some time before your card expires to save you from last minute rush.
Check the version of Green Card you have
Some versions of the Green Card have no expiration dates, while others are just older versions of the current Green Card in use. Whichever the case, you need to know how to renew the Green Card that you have, which is different for each.
Know what happens in case your renewal request is delayed
There are some things that can happen if your renewal is delayed. First of all, you will not lose your status as a permanent residence of the U.S. if your Green Card expires. However, getting a job or benefits, or entering the States from abroad will be quite difficult, because you need to prove that you are in the country legally. Your temporary proof of status serves its purpose for you as you await your renewed Green Card.
Also, you will not be penalized if your Card is past due. Simply fill out the needed forms, pay the fee and wait for the process to be completed. In case you have delayed applying for renewal because you cannot raise the fee on time, you can apply for a waiver, but you will need to go to your local USCIS office in person to do it.
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