The green card renewal process is important for non-citizens who wish to maintain the benefits of being a lawful permanent resident in the United States. However, navigating the renewal process of the Permanent Resident Card can be hectic and sometimes confusing.
To put it into perspective, the green card renewal process for a permanent resident living in the United States differs from that of a permanent resident out of the country. The same applies to checking the replacement green card status.
Before we discuss the specific steps to check the status of green card renewal based on your location, let’s first go over the actual renewal process and how to qualify for renewal.
Eligibility for Green Card Renewal
You can renew a green card if you are a green card holder (lawful permanent resident, or simply known as an LPR):
- who was issued a green card valid for 10 years and that card has either expired or is set to expire within the next six months;
- a permanent resident who was issued a green card before the age of 14 and has now turned 14;
- whose previous LPR card was lost, stolen, mutilated, or destroyed;
- whose green card contains incorrect data;
- who has been a commuter and is now switching to an actual residence in the United States;
- living in the United States and is now taking up commuter status;
- with previous versions of green cards (such as USCIS Form AR-3, Form AR-103, or Form I-151) who wishes to replace them with the current permanent resident card; or
- whose name or other biographic information on the card has been legally changed since they last received the card.
You can also apply for green card renewal if you are a foreign national who meets the following conditions:
- your status has been automatically converted to lawful permanent resident status (including a special agricultural worker); or
- you have never received a previous green card issued by the USCIS.
Green Card Application Renewal Online
To apply for the renewal of your green card, you must first create an online account with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Then, once you have created an account, fill out Form I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card (Green Card), and provide all the necessary details and information about your expiring green card.
You must also upload the required evidence, such as a copy of your expired or soon-to-expire green card. After completing and reviewing your application, you must digitally sign it and pay the applicable government fees (if any) before submitting it. If approved, you’ll need to wait for your new green card to arrive via the mailing address you provided while filling out the application.
How to Apply for a Green Card Renewal By Mail?
Suppose you prefer applying for a permanent resident card renewal by mail. In that case, you will need to complete a paper Form I-90. Then, make a copy of the required evidence, such as your expired or soon-to-expire green card.
After thoroughly reviewing and signing your application, include your payment for any applicable government fees. Once you have gathered all the required documents and completed the application process, you can mail your application to the USCIS lockbox facility in Phoenix, Arizona.
Use the following USCIS Office mailing address: USCIS, P.O. Box 21262, Phoenix, AZ, 85036.
The USCIS will review your application. If approved, they will send the new green card to the mailing address you provided.
Different Ways to Check the Green Card Renewal Status From the United States
There are several different ways to check on the status of your green card renewal application, as discussed below.
1. How to Perform a Status Check Online?
To check your green card status online, follow these steps:
- Visit the Check Case Status page on the USCIS website.
- On the page, enter your receipt number, also known as the case number.
- Click ‘Check Status’.
This step allows you to view your entire application history and stay up-to-date with any changes or updates regarding the application.
2. How to Check the Renewal Status By Phone (Text or Email)?
Suppose you would like to receive text or email notifications from USCIS when your application is accepted. If so, you can fill out and submit Form G-1145 (also known as the “e-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance”) along with your renewal application.
This option gives you access to timely updates on the status of your renewal application. It can also keep you informed throughout the process.
3. How to Check the LPR Card Renewal Status By Phone?
The other option is to check the case status by calling the USCIS at 1-800-375-5283. But before that, ensure you have your case number and identifying information such as your passport, birth certificate, or government-issued ID. It is also important to note that you should prepare to stay on hold for at least 30 minutes due to the high call volumes.
How to Check Status From Outside the U.S.?
If your green card expires while you are outside the United States, you will need to contact NVC (National Visa Center) by filling out this form.
When filling out the NVC form, ensure you provide the following:
- Your USCIS receipt number or NVC case number.
- Your full name.
- Date of birth.
- Email address.
- Any other required information.
Can I Track My Resident Card Renewal Mail Online?
Yes, you can. To do that, you must create a Case Status Online account. The USCIS will send status updates regarding your green card, including your USCIS tracking number, to the USCIS online account when they mail the green card.
The easiest way to track the package is by creating an Informed Delivery account through USPS. Then, enter the tracking number you received from the USCIS to track your package.
Remember to Update You Address With the USCIS
Remember that the USCIS will mail the renewed green card to the address listed on the application. So, if you plan on moving, you should update your address within 10 days of moving.
If you do not receive your renewed green card within a reasonable time frame after the expected delivery date, contact USCIS to follow up on your green card mail status. The USCIS online account can also ensure you don’t miss any important updates about your case.
How Long Does It Take for Green Card Renewal?
The processing time for green card renewal varies depending on different factors, such as:
- the current workload of the USCIS;
- whether the application has been completed correctly; and
- any additional evidence or documentation required.
That said, as of March 2023, the USCIS processing times for green card renewal range between 5 to 20 months. This estimated processing time depends on the service center processing your application.
To avoid delays in the green card renewal process, you should submit a complete and accurate application with all required documents, including the government filing fees.
Read More | Checklist of Required Green Card Documents
In addition, remember to apply for renewal at least six months before the expiration date of your current green card to avoid any gaps in your lawful permanent resident (LPR) status.
How Long Does It Take To Receive Your Green Card in the Mail After Renewal?
The time it takes for the green card to arrive in the mail after successful renewal depends on the factors we’ve discussed above (volume of applications received by USCIS, the complexity of your case, and whether your application is complete and accurate).
The USCIS Processing Times tool is a great resource for tracking your green card renewal process and other immigration petitions. Once your renewal application is approved, USCIS will mail your new green card to the address you provided on your application within 2-3 weeks in most cases.
How Do I Check if My Green Card Renewal Has Been Submitted?
You can use the USICS Case Status tool to check if the USCIS has accepted your Form I-190. Wait at least 72 hours after filing to check its status.
How Do I Find My USCIS Receipt Number Online?
The USCIS usually sends the receipt number via mail, not online. You can contact the USCIS at 800-375-5283 for guidance if you can’t find the receipt number.
How Long Does It Take for USCIS To Send Receipt Notices 2023?
As of February 2023, the USCIS takes between 1 week to 30 days from the date the application is received to send the receipt notice.
You may contact the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 1-800-375-5283 to inquire about the status of your application if you do not receive a receipt notice from USCIS within the estimated processing time.
Before contacting the USCIS, ensure that your contact information, such as your mailing address, is up-to-date and accurate.
Can I Speed Up the Renewal of My Green Card?
Yes, you can speed up your green card renewal through expedited processing. However, the USCIS can only grant such a request in certain limited situations, such as if:
- you can prove that the delay in processing your green card renewal application will cause you severe financial loss;
- you have an emergency situation, such as a serious illness or a death in the family, and you need your green card renewed to travel;
- there was a clear USCIS error; or
- you have qualifying humanitarian reasons.
What Happens if My Green Card Expires While Waiting for Renewal?
If your green card expires while waiting for renewal, you may encounter difficulties traveling, obtaining employment, or accessing certain government services.
However, if you timely filed your green card renewal application and the application is still pending, you may be eligible to receive an extension of your green card for a specific period under the “automatic extension of validity” provision.
For instance, in September 2022, the USCIS announced a 24-month extension for green card renewals.
Can You Travel While Waiting for a Green Card Renewal?
You should apply for a travel document (Reentry Permit or Advance Parole) if you plan to travel outside the U.S. while your green card renewal application is pending. This document will allow you to travel and reenter the country while your green card renewal application is pending.
You must also provide evidence of pending application, such as a copy of the Form I-797C Notice of Action (receipt notice) or a copy of the application itself.
Note: you should plan for additional time at the airport or border crossing to allow for the inspection and verification of your travel document and evidence of your pending green card renewal application.
When Should I Apply for Green Card Renewal?
You should apply for green card renewal if your current green card will expire within six months or has already expired. If you are outside of the United States when your green card expires or will expire in less than six months, you should contact a U.S. consulate, USCIS field office, or port of entry before filing Form I-90.
Be prepared to encounter problems when re-entering the United States if you fail to renew your green card before it expires. You may also not be able to obtain employment or access certain government benefits available to lawful permanent residents of the U.S.
Can I Check the Renewal Application Status In Person?
Currently, the USCIS does not offer any option to check green card status in person. That said, you can check your green card renewal status online or via phone (by calling the USCIS contact center) as explained in the steps we discussed earlier in this article.
When you call the USCIS, a Tier 1 representative will answer your question. If they cannot answer your questions, they will transfer you to a Tier 2 representative. If the Tier 2 representative cannot answer your questions, they will help you schedule an in-person appointment at the closest USCIS field office.
This step only applies if you live in the U.S. If you do not live in the U.S., you should contact the NVC.