Green Card

People who have a green card might not even realise that it’s expired. Because you don’t use your card every day, it’s easy for your expired card to go unnoticed. However, by law, permanent residents have to carry a valid green card with them at all times, but in practice this rarely happens. And when people do realise that their card has expired, they don’t want to renew it straightaway due to the high fees that they have to pay to renew or replace a green card.

However, the issue with putting off replacing your green card is that there is very little that can substitute for it. When you need it, you’ll really need it. If you don’t renew it then you may be faced with some major problems. However, it doesn’t mean that you’ll lose your permanent resident status, it can just make things a lot more difficult for you. Try and make sure you renew your card six months before it expires using a i 90 form. This way you won’t have to worry about it running out. If it does run out, then below are three main problems that you will have to deal with. 

Getting a Job with an Expired Green Card

When you are trying to get a job, then you might find it incredibly hard with an expired green card. The reason behind this is because your employer is required to submit a Form I-9 for each new employee. This form is used to prove to your employer that you have the right to work in the United States. When you start a new job, you will need to sign the I-9 on your first day. If you present an expired green card to your employer when you do this, then they should not accept it.

This is why it makes it difficult for you to get a new job with an expired green card. You should make sure that you keep on top of your expiry date for your green card. If you don’t have a valid green card though, then you can look to getting a foreign passport with a temporary I-551 stamp. However, the issue with this is that it can be incredibly time consuming, as it might take several weeks for you to get an appointment for the I-551 stamp. So, it won’t work if you need it straight away. 

Re-Entering the US with an Expired Green Card

Another thing that having an expired green card can make difficult is re-entering the US. If you are planning on travelling anywhere then you need to make sure that you have a valid green card. This can be a risky idea, particularly as some airlines won’t even let a person board if they don’t have a valid green card. US law requires airlines to check for proof of permanent residence before boarding (you will also have to make sure you have a valid passport).

To re-enter the US, the Customs and Border Protection will require valid proof of your lawful permanent residence. If you don’t have this then you should expect major delays and an expensive re-entry fee. In worst case scenarios you might be refused entry. This isn’t something which you want to risk, so why should you take any chances? Make sure your green card is valid and you won’t have to worry about this happening. 

Buying a House with an Expired Green Card

This is something which will depend on the lender that you use. However, when it comes to buying a house you will want to make the process a lot easier. As a permanent residence you will be able to get a home mortgage, just as any US citizen will be able to. But as a borrower, you might prove your resident status by providing a photocopy of your green card to a potential lender. 

Most mortgage lenders will require a current green card that hasn’t expired. It takes about ten to twelve months to renew a green card, which means that you won’t be able to get a house in that time. So why wait, when you can make sure that you update your green card first before it expires. If you are interested in learning more about immigration law, then you can check out this article here