Keeping a Green Card
When your petition for a green card is approved and a visa is available to you, you will need to apply for an adjustment of status if you are currently in the United States or consular processing if you are abroad. Upon completing either of these processes, you will receive your physical green card and will be authorized to live and work almost anywhere in the United States.
Lawful permanent residents still have responsibilities they must fulfill and can still be targeted for removal if they break certain rules. For example, you must formally notify United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) whenever you move and change your primary address. You must also continue to meet good moral character requirements, which generally means not being convicted of any serious crimes.
Most green cards will be valid for 10-year periods but can be easily renewed. If you obtained your green card through a marriage that is less than 2 years old, your green card will be “conditional” and expire after only 2 years. You can remove conditions by filing a joint petition in the 90-day window before the green card expires. Failing to remove conditions on a green card will result in your status lapsing, leading to the accumulation of unlawful presence and possibly removal proceedings.
We understand that the U.S. immigration system can be unnecessarily convoluted, and it can be frustratingly easy to make honest mistakes. Our Short Hills green card consultants at Worldwide Legal Services can provide comprehensive assistance if you have inadvertently broken a rule and consequently jeopardized your permanent residency. Our team has decades of experience handling these matters for our clients and can work to efficiently resolve conflicts and protect your future in the United States.