After the long process of applying for a green card, it can be a huge disappointment when you lose or damage yours. Not having proof of permanent resident status can lead to legal complications and fines. Fortunately, the process for replacing your green card is fairly simple and speedy. Learn more about replacing your stolen or lost green card:
When should I replace my green card?
There are certain circumstances when it’s obvious that you need to replace your green card, such as when it is stolen, lost, destroyed or mutilated beyond readability. However, there are a host of other reasons you may need to apply for a replacement, including:
- Your green card contains incorrect information.
- Your name or personal information has been legally changed.
- You never received the previous green card issued by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
- It was issued before age 14 and you have just turned 14 (though some cards do not need to be replaced until age 16).
- You’ve been commuting to the U.S. but now plan on taking up residence in the country, or vice versa.
- Your status was automatically converted to that of permanent resident.
- You have an outdated version of an alien registration card and must replace it with a current green card.
How do I apply?
After determining that you need a replacement green card, you can begin the application process. Those who are permanent residents can apply in one of two ways:
- Using the online e-filing form I-90 (Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card)
- Filling out the paper form I-90 and mailing it to USCIS
These same application methods can be used by conditional residents who need to replace their two-year green cards. Those who are living outside of the U.S. should contact the nearest U.S. consulate office, USCIS location or port of entry before filling out the I-90 form.
How do I check the status of my application?
After applying for a green card replacement, you must wait for your I-90 application to be approved before receiving your proof of permanent residence. You can check the status of your application at the USCIS “My Case Status” page. In the event that your request for a replacement green card is denied, you cannot appeal the decision. However, you can submit a motion to reopen or reconsider the application, in which case the office you applied through will reexamine your information.