3 Problems with Expired Green Cards

You don’t need a valid green card until you do. Then, you really do.

Permanent residents are required by law to carry a valid green card at all times. If that doesn’t convince you to renew your expiring or expired green card, here’s four major life problems that might.

Ready to renew your green card? FileRight.com can help. We provide “do-it-yourself” software and lawyer review services to help you properly complete the immigration application process.

Problem #1: You Need a Valid Green Card To Get a Job

Employers are required to verify your identity and permission to work in the United States. When starting a new job, you will generally be asked to complete the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services I-9 form. With it, you’ll need to provide valid proof of your immigration status.

It is possible to get temporary proof of your permanent residence status with an I-551 stamp from a USCIS Field Office. However, this stamp is only a temporary fix and generally valid for 1 year only.

Problem #2: You Need a Valid Green Card To Re-enter the U.S. after Traveling

Permanent residents are required to present a valid green card or Form I-551 to re-enter the U.S. If you’ve been traveling for longer than 1 year, you’ll also need a reentry permit. If traveling for 2 years or more, you’ll need a Returning Resident Visa.

If you know your green card will expire while you’re out of the country, you can request an I-551 stamp that is valid for 1-year. This will allow you to re-enter the U.S. without an issue.

What if you decide to travel with an expired green card? There is the possibility that you won’t be able to re-enter the United States. Some airlines may not allow you on the plane. Others may require you have a Form I-131A, Travel Document, costing you a fee $575. It’s also possible that you won’t encounter any problems.

Is it worth the risk? Probably not. Better to get a new green card before you go.

Problem #3: You Need a Valid Green Card to Renew a Driver’s License

Most states require that you show valid proof of immigration status to get a driver’s license. It takes 4-6 months to renew a green card and this could affect your driving privileges.

Find out more about state requirements for driver licenses here.

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