Do I Need to Renew Green Card Prior to Citizenship Application?
Author: New York Immigration lawyer Alena Shautsova
Many permanent residents have a question as to what they need to do if they are eligible for naturalization, but their green card or permanent resident card has expired: do they renew it first, or shall they just apply for citizenship?
The Immigration laws require that permanent residents over age 18 be in possession of a permanent resident card. INA § 264.
As such, if an individual applies for naturalization six months or more before the expiration on his/her permanent resident card (Green Card), he/she does not have to apply for a new card. However, he/she may apply for a renewal card by using Form I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card.
If an individual applied for naturalization less than six months before the expiration date on his/her Permanent Resident Card, or did not apply for naturalization until the card had already expired, then he/she must renew his/her card.
If the card was lost, the card must be renewed/restored before applying for citizenship.