A permanent resident is the one who is granted authorization to live and work permanently in the United States. As a proof of the permanent resident status the individual is given an identification or an authorization card which is commonly called as Form I-551.
A Form I-551 is said to be valid for ten years and must be renewed before the expiration date. Certain green card will not have an expiration date. Although these green card do not have an expiration date, the law requires all cards to be updated to the new version. The latest green cards have an expiration date and are required to be renewed every ten years as this will make the USCIS to improve the card with additional features like updating the photographs to avoid fraud.
If the Form I-551 is obtained through marriage to a US Citizen or a permanent resident, it is called as Conditional Green Card. The Conditional permanent residence is valid for two years and must be renewed before the conditional resident status expires. To remove the conditions on the residence the form I 751 is used.
How to renew your permanent residence
Permanent Residents whose green cards have already expired or will expire shortly must renew the green card. If one fails to renew the Form I-551 he may experience difficulties in employment, be barred from reentry into United States until a new card is obtained, restricted from other benefits, and is said to be as Out of Status. Although the person with an expired Form I-551 will not lose his permanent residence status, he is required by the law to hold a valid green card.
Reasons to Renew Green Card:
An individual must adopt the Form I-551 renewal process, if
• the permanent card was valid for 10 years and is expiring or has expired
• he/she has been a permanent resident of the United States and now taken up Commuter status;
• he/she has been in a Commuter status and now taking up residence in the U.S.;
• the status has been converted automatically to a permanent residence status;
• he/she has an old edition of the card;
GreenCard Renewal process:
To renew the Form I-551 the form I90 must be filed by the applicant. The completed applications must be sent to USCIS along with the supporting documents and relevant fees.
Every greencard renewal application must be included with the required supporting documents such as,
Photocopies of the front and back of the Expired or Expiring permanent Residence Personal Identification document such as a State Driver’s license card or a valid passport
Once the application for permanent residence card renewal has been received by the USCIS, they will check if all the required evidence provided are correct and complete. USCIS may then request for more information and might require the applicants to appear for an interview. If the Form I-551 Renewal application is approved, the new Form I-551 will be mailed to the applicant. If the application is denied, USICS will send in writing the reason for rejection of the application.