Green Card Expirations

Thứ Tư, 04 Tháng Hai 201521:13(Xem: 19717)
Green Card Expirations

This week we look at dates important to permanent residents and to those applying to become permanent residents of the United States.

The expiration date of the Green Card is important. For people with a ten year Green Card, there is no expiration date on their status as lawful permanent resident. The expiration date only applies to the Green Card itself. However, this does not mean that the date on the green card should be ignored.

An expired 10 year Green Card is like an expired passport. If the US passport expires, the person is still an American citizen, but the expired passport cannot be used for travel outside the US. If the ten year Green Card expires, the permanent resident is still a permanent resident, but the expired Green Card cannot be used for international travel or to prove eligibility for employment.

Therefore, permanent residents with a ten year Green Card are encouraged to file form I-90 to renew the green card during the final six months of the card's validity.

Two Year Green Cards for Conditional Residents are different. Conditional permanent residence is granted in green card cases based upon marriage, when the marriage is less than two-years-old at the time the case is approved. Conditional residents must file a petition to remove conditions within 90 days before the two year Green Card expires.

An expired two year card is different from an expired ten year Green Card. When a ten year Green Card expires, the person still keeps the permanent resident status. However, for conditional permanent residents, the expiration date on their green cards means the end of their permanent resident status if they do not file the I-751 form on time.

In the 90-days before the end of the two-year period, the conditional resident must file an I-751 to "remove the conditions." Failure to file this I-751 during the 90 day period before the expiration date of the two year card will result in loss of permanent resident status and, potentially, even placement in removal (deportation) proceedings. Therefore, this deadline should be taken seriously.

The correct form to remove conditions for two year Green Card holders is the I-751. A frequent mistake by conditional permanent residents is filing the incorrect form at the end of the two-year period. Immigrants sometimes make a mistake and file a form I-90 application to replace a two year permanent resident card. The I-90 cannot be used to remove conditions and obtain a permanent Green Card. And, there have been many incidences of the USCIS accepting the I-90's. Months later, when CIS tells the applicants that the I-90 is not correct for them, the two year Green Cards have expired and the applicants have lost their permanent resident status.

Q.1. What is the processing time for the I-90 and I-751 applications?

A.1. CIS is now processing these applications if they were received before May 2014.
Q.2. For Conditional Permanent Residents, what happens if CIS does not approve the Green Card renewal application by the time the Green Card expires?
A.2. The CIS receipt notice for the I-751 serves as proof of continuing permanent resident status. USCIS automatically extends the green card and permanent residency status while they are deciding on the petition. So, if you have filed an I-751 you will remain in conditional resident status until they make a decision on your I-751.

Q.3. For a two year conditional Green Card, what happens if the US citizen spouse refuses to sign the I-751 petition?

A.3. In such cases, there is usually a divorce. The divorce, plus evidence that the marriage was genuine, is enough to allow the foreign spouse to file the I-751 without the sponsor’s cooperation. If the foreign spouse has been abused physically or psychologically, and has evidence of this, then she can file the I-751 without a divorce and without the husband’s cooperation.

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