How to Renew Your U.S. Green Card

Cost, timing, and other concerns when filing USCIS Form I-90 for a renewed identity card indicating your lawful permanent residence.

By , Attorney · Oklahoma City University School of Law

If you are a lawful permanent resident of the United States, then you have what is commonly referred to as a "green card," a form of identity document. Since the actual green cards expire after ten years, lawful permanent residents need to renew them. To do so, you will prepare a form from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) called Form I-90. You can file it either online or by mail.

Filling out this form can be confusing, because it is used to request more than just renewing a green card. People whose name has changed, whose green card has been lost, or who never received their green card at all can also use Form I-90. This article will address only when and how to use the Form I-90 to renew your green card and what to expect from this process.

Keep in mind that if you are a conditional resident seeking to make your green card permanent after two years, you must follow a different process; do not use the Form I-90.

How Much Does It Cost to Renew a U.S. Green Card?

Staring April 1, 2024, the I-131 fee is $415 for online filing and $465 for paper filing. Biometrics services will (if needed in your case) be automatically included.

And there are exceptions to the fee obligation; some people need not pay the application fee at all. If USCIS failed to send you the new green card at all, you need not pay any fee to make this follow-up request that it do so. Always check the USCIS website page for Form I-90 for the latest filing fee information.

How Long Does It Take to Renew a Green Card?

As of early 2024, USCIS was taking around 20 months to renew green cards. For the most up-to-date processing times, check the USCIS website.

If USCIS takes longer than the posted processing times, you can submit a case inquiry to see what the problem is.

When Should I Submit Form I-90 to USCIS to Renew My Green Card?

You can submit the Form I-90 to renew your green card only if your green card has already expired or will expire within the next six months.

For example, if your green card expires in seven months, you cannot yet file the Form I-90 to renew; you must wait another month. But if your green card has already expired, it is not too late to submit the Form I-90. Your application will not be denied simply because your current green card is expired.

Because USCIS typically takes longer than six months to process the Form I-90, it is best to submit the Form I-90 as soon as you are six months away from your green card's expiration.

Should I Submit Anything Along With Form I-90?

Form I-90 is an important starting point, but it's not all you'll need to file.

First, to advise USCIS that the point of filing the form is to renew your green card, select box 2.f in the "Reason for Application" section of the Form I-90.

Then be sure to submit a copy of the front and back of your current green card along with the filing fee.

What Happens After I Submit Form I-90 to USCIS?

Within two to four weeks, you should receive a receipt from USCIS (a Form I-797C) informing you that USCIS has received your application and begun processing it. You can use the receipt number on this document to check your case statute online.

The USCIS receipt notice also automatically extends your green card validity. You will be expected to show it, along with the actual green card (even if its expired) to prove your status when returning from foreign travel, accepting a new job from a U.S. employer, and so on. In the past, the normal extension of green card validity was 12 months; but in 2022, in light of the long processing times, USCIS extended it to 24 months.

Within one to four weeks of when your receipt arrives, you will receive an ASC Appointment Notice informing you of the time and place that USCIS will take your biometric information. Once you have attended your ASC appointment, USCIS will continue processing your application. If USCIS approves it, you will receive your new green card in the mail.

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