The following information is about green card interviews, renewals, status checks, and losses.

Green Card interview

Before being approved for a green card, most applicants must attend an interview. The interview is usually the final step in the process of getting a green card. After reviewing the application with all supporting documents, the immigration authorities usually like to meet the applicant in person before making a final decision (in most cases). The location of the interview will depend on the residence of the applicant. If a person applies from overseas, the interview will take place in the US consulate located in the country/area of residence of that person. People who apply in the United States will attend their interviews at an office of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that is closest to their home addresses.

Once you receive an actual interview notice, it is important that you have all the required paper work ready, have reviewed your application beforehand, are prepared to prove any changes in your application, and are telling the truth. If you are interviewing for a visa through marriage, be prepared to be asked some personal questions. Remember to remain professional and calm. Be sure to consult an immigration lawyer before attending this interview.

If you don’t pass the interview, in most cases you will not be flat out rejected unless you very clearly do not meet the qualifications. Therefore, you will be given time to take some sort of follow-up actions, such as submitting additional documents or information. However, if you are denied and not given the chance to take follow-up actions, you will then look into your appeal rights, which will most likely be the I-290B appeal. Once again, you should consult an experienced immigration attorney immediately if the result of the interview is not favorable.

How to Renew a Green Card

If you have already received a green card and the next step down the road would be to renew it. You should renew your green card every 10 years. This process may take up to three months so it is important to start it long before the expiration of the current green card. It is strongly recommended to submit an application for renewal six (6) months before the expiration date. If you are outside of the United States and your green card will expire within 6 months but you will return to the U.S. before it expires, you should file for your renewal card as soon as you return to the states. If you are outside of the United States and will not return to the U.S. before it expires and did not apply for renewal before you left, you should contact the nearest U.S. Consulate, USCIS office, or U.S. port of entry before attempting to file an application for renewal.

Certain events may prevent the renewal of the green card. If a person lived outside the country for a long period of time and otherwise cut tights with the US, the immigration department may view his residency as abandoned and refuse the renewal. Also, if a person was involved in crimes or other immoral conduct while staying in the country with a green card, it may negatively influence the decision on the application to renew as well. Be sure to discuss every detail, which puts you in doubt about your eligibility with the immigration attorney before the submitting an application to USCIS. Some applications require supporting evidence or explanations being submitted, not just a form by itself. Every detail matters and the decision of the officer will depend on the personal circumstances of each case.

How to Check Your Green Card Status

You can check the status of your green card application using the following link:

Do not be alarmed if you applied and cannot find your status online. Remember that an e-filed receipt number may not be available through “My Case Status” for up to 72 hours. You can also contact the USCIS National Customer Service Center (NCSC) at 1-800-375-5283 with further questions about your status. Make sure to have your information such as your receipt number, Alien Registration Number, name and date of birth at hand in order to make the phone call as quickly and easy as possible. If you are working with an immigration attorney, he/she can do it for you and probably in any case your attorney will keep you informed about the progress of your case on a regular basis.

Lost Green Card

If your green card was lost or stolen, you’ll need to replace it as soon as possible, since it is physical proof of your right to be in the United States. Furthermore, you’re legally required to carry proof of your permanent resident status with you if you are 18 or older.

The process for replacing a lost or stolen green card is similar to the process for renewing your green card. The fee to replace a permanent resident card is $455 along with a $85 Biometrics Fee. This fee is required whether or not your application is accepted.

Furthermore, there are a few extra steps you should keep in mind that are recommended. You should gather documentation regarding your green card to expedite the process. Make sure to file a report to your local police station about your lost green card, since the USCIS may request more information from the permanent residents looking to replace a lost green card and such police report will often qualify as the information they are looking for.