United States lawful permanent residency, informally known as having a green card, is the immigration status of a person authorized to live and work in the United States of America permanently. Green cards are valid for 10 years for permanent residents, and 2 years for conditional permanent residents. After this period, the card must be renewed or replaced. The application process may take several years. An immigrant usually has to go through a three-step process to get permanent residency that includes petition and processing.
A United States Permanent Resident Card (USCIS Form I-551), formerly known as Alien Registration Card or Alien Registration Receipt Card (INS Form I-151), is an identification card attesting to the permanent resident status of an alien in the United States. Owing to its green design from 1946 until 1964, it is known informally as a "green card", a nickname it retained even after the color was changed. The card was restored to green in 2010. "Green card" also refers to an immigration process of becoming a permanent resident. The green card serves as proof that its holder, a lawful permanent resident (LPR), has been officially granted immigration benefits, including permission to reside and take employment in the United States. The holder must maintain permanent resident status, and can be removed from the United States if certain conditions of this status are not met.Contact Us »