Getting a green card can be a long and stressful process. Also known as permanent resident cards, green cards enable individuals from other countries to live and work in the U.S. While individuals must sit for an interview to qualify for a green card, in most cases interviewing isn’t a part of the green card renewal process. However, under certain circumstances, green card recipients may have to sit for a second interview in order to renew a card that’s expired or expiring. Keep reading to learn how green cards work and find out whether there’s likely to be an interview for your green card renewal.
What Is a Green Card?
So, what is a green card anyway? A status granted to people born in other countries, green cards afford non-U.S. citizens permanent residence in the United States. Along with granting individuals the right to live and work in this country for a period of time, a green card allows you to qualify for citizenship after three to five years. While almost anyone can apply for a green card, the government is most likely to afford cards to family members of Americans and employees from other countries seeking to work in the U.S.
Circumstances may arise in which an individual needs to replace their green card. As a lawful permanent resident, you should apply for a new card if:
- Your current green card is expired, expiring, missing, lost, or stolen
- You are turning 14
- You are moving from commuter to resident status (or resident to commuter status)
- You have an older version of the Alien Registration Card
- Your card has the wrong legal name or other incorrect information
How to Replace Your Green Card
Lawful permanent residents and conditional permanent residents can begin the application process by filling out Form I-90, also known as the Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card. You can opt to apply for a new card online or by mail. One of the benefits of using the online system is that you will receive faster updates on the outcome of your case.
Will You Be Interviewed for Green Card Renewal?
Generally, individuals do not have to attend another interview to renew their green cards. In most cases, the government assumes that key data points like your job, residence, and marital status have remained the same. As long as you remain a law-abiding U.S. resident, the government is unlikely to bring you in for an interview.
Still, situations may arise in which the government does mandate a second interview. Although it’s rare for individuals to have to submit to another interview to renew their green card, the government does reserve the right to call people in under certain circumstances. You can expect to be notified about the need for an interview in advance and to receive an explanation of why it’s required. Here are some reasons you may be required to attend a second interview:
- You came close to failing your first interview
- Your visa was based on marriage
- You recently divorced, switched jobs, or experienced a status change
- You were randomly selected
Additionally, individuals who are arrested or convicted of a crime are frequently required to attend a green card renewal interview. In most cases, smaller crimes such as parking tickets and DUIs will not result in a green card holder being deported. On the other hand, more serious crimes and DUIs involving drugs are likely to result in a deportation. Individuals who are considered reckless or a danger to other citizens may not be granted a green card renewal.
Trust JacksonWhite With Your Immigration Needs
It’s no secret that U.S. immigration law can be complex. While most green card holders are able to renew their cards without trouble, circumstances may arise in which it’s helpful to have a lawyer in your corner. From providing advice to helping applicants fill out forms, the team at JacksonWhite Law has the knowledge and experience to handle a wide range of immigration and green card cases. Additionally, we can provide you with valuable resources to increase your chances at passing an exam. Contact us today!
Call our Immigration team at (480) 626-2388 to discuss your case today.