After you have applied for your Green Card, you may travel outside the United States. Learn how to get a travel authorization (called a “Advance Parole”) and what documents you need to re-enter the United States.
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Applying for a Green Card
Applying for a Green Card
The first step in applying for a Green Card is to file an immigrant petition with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Once your petition is approved, you will be notified and can then apply for a Green Card.
The process of applying for a Green Card can take several months or even years, depending on your individual circumstances. The USCIS website provides more information on the average processing time for each type of petition.
Once you have applied for a Green Card, you will need to wait for your application to be processed. The USCIS will send you a notice telling you when you can expect to receive your Green Card. Once your application has been approved, you will be issued a Green Card and will be able to travel freely within the United States.
The Green Card Application Process
The first step in applying for a green card is to complete the USCIS Form I-485, which is also known as the “Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status.” This form must be filed with the USCIS office that serves the area where you live. You will also need to pay a filing fee and submit certain supporting documents, including proof of your identity, proof of your relationship to any family members who are included in your application, and proof that you are eligible for a green card.
Once your application is received and accepted, you will be scheduled for an interview with a USCIS officer. This interview will be used to determine whether you are eligible for a green card and whether you are admissible to the United States. If you are found to be eligible and admissible, you will be issued a green card. If your application is denied, you will have the opportunity to appeal the decision.
After You Apply for a Green Card
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) generally processes green card applications in about six to eight months. However, because of the large volume of applications, processing times may vary. You can check the USCIS website for current processing times.
Once your application is approved, you will receive a notice in the mail with your green card and instructions on how to activate it. You will also be given a date to appear for your green card interview, if one is required.
The Green Card Interview
You’ve applied for a green card and now it’s time for your interview! The interview process is the last step in getting your green card. During your green card interview, a USCIS officer will ask you questions about your application and background. The purpose of the interview is to verify that the information you provided on your application is accurate and that you are eligible to receive a green card.
The USCIS officer will also review your documents to make sure that you are eligible for a green card. It is important to bring all of the required documents to your interview. If you do not have a required document, the USCIS officer may not be able to approve your green card.
You will need to bring:
-Your birth certificate
-Your marriage certificate (if applicable)
-Your divorce decree or death certificate (if applicable)
-A copy of your lease or mortgage
-Your children’s birth certificates (if applicable)
-Evidence of financial support (if applicable)
-Your employment letter (if applicable)
After your interview, the USCIS officer will tell you whether or not you have been approved for a green card. If you are approved, you will receive your green card in the mail within a few weeks. If you are not approved, the USCIS officer will tell you what steps you need to take next.
After the Green Card Interview
After the Green Card Interview
After you have attended your green card interview at the U.S. embassy or consulate, the consular officer will tell you whether your application for a permanent residence is approved or denied.
If your application is denied, the consular officer will give you a written explanation of the reasons for the denial. If you are eligible to reapply, you will be given instructions on how to do so.
If your application is approved, the consular officer will give you your immigrant visa and a sealed packet containing all your documents. Do not open this packet. You must submit it unopened to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) when you enter the United States. An immigration inspector at the port of entry will open it and verify that all documents are present before admitting you into the United States as a permanent resident.
Receiving Your Green Card
You will receive your green card approximately two to three weeks after your interview at a U.S. embassy or consulate. Once you have your green card, you may travel freely in and out of the United States for the remainder of its validity, which is usually 10 years. If you have any questions about traveling on your new green card, please contact the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.
Living as a Permanent Resident
After you have been granted a green card, you are allowed to live and work permanently in the United States. You will need to carry your green card with you at all times. If you are outside of the United States for more than one year, you will need to obtain a reentry permit.
Renewing or Replacing Your Green Card
If your green card expires, you will need to renew or replace it. The process for doing so is very similar to the process you went through when you first applied for your green card. You will need to fill out an application and submit it along with the required documentation. Once your application is approved, you will be issued a new green card.
If you are renewing your green card, you should do so as soon as possible. You can usually travel outside of the United States on your current green card until it expires. However, if you plan to travel after your green card expires, you will need to get a new one before you leave.
If you are replacing your green card because it was lost or stolen, you will need to submit a police report along with your application. You should also submit a new photo with your application. You may be able to get a new green card more quickly if you have an emergency situation.
What If You Lose Your Green Card?
If you lose or misplace your green card, you should contact the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) as soon as possible. You will need to file a Form I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card. There is a filing fee for this form, and it can take several months to process. Once your new green card arrives, be sure to keep it in a safe place.
Applying for US Citizenship
After you become a permanent resident, you may travel outside the United States and return, as long as you have your Green Card with you. You can apply for a reentry permit if you will be traveling outside the country for more than one year but less than two years. If you are traveling for more than two years, you will need to apply for a returning resident visa.