Featured News 2016 What You Need to Know About Green Cards

What You Need to Know About Green Cards

One of the most common paths to U.S. citizenship is to obtain a green card (become a permanent resident) and then apply for naturalization after having a green card for at least 5 years. If you obtain a green card and have it for at least 5 years, you may apply for naturalization providing you meet the following requirements:

  • You are at least 18 years of age.
  • You have been a green card holder for at least 5 years.
  • You have lived in the U.S. continuously for at least 5 years.
  • You have been physically present in the U.S. for at least 30 months out of the last 5 years.
  • You can read, write, and speak English.
  • You have a basic understanding of U.S. history and civics.
  • You are of good moral character; you have not committed any crimes of "moral turpitude," such as fraud, domestic violence, rape, theft, or an aggravated felony.

Some of the benefits of having a green card, include: 1) you can prove your eligibility to work in the United States, 2) you can obtain a driver's license, and 3) you can apply for a Social Security card.

If a green card is granted, your Permanent Resident Card (green card) authorizes you to live and work in the United States. As a permanent resident, you will be required to carry your green card with you at all times.

Renewing a 10-Year Green Card

If your green card is valid for 10 years, you should renew your green card within 6 months of the expiration date. If you have a 10-year green card, you file a Form I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card, however, you do NOT file this form if you have a 2-year green card.

Unfortunately, 2-year green cards cannot be renewed. Instead, 90 days before a 2-year green card expires, the permanent resident petitions to have their conditions removed before their green card expires.

If you need more detailed information about green cards, don't hesitate to contact an immigration attorney for legal advice!

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