Chapter 2 - Replacement of Permanent Resident Card
Lawful permanent residents (LPRs) are entitled to evidence of status in the United States. LPRs are eligible for replacement of their Permanent Resident Card (PRC) if they meet requirements, including but not limited to, the following:
Properly file the Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card (Form I-90);
Establish LPR or conditional permanent resident (CPR) status; and
Otherwise meet the eligibility requirements to receive a replacement PRC.
Maintaining LPR or CPR Status
LPR status generally begins from the date the government admits a noncitizen to the United States as an LPR or grants or recognizes LPR status. LPR status ends if and when rescinded by USCIS, terminated in removal proceedings, or the status is abandoned. Similarly, CPR status generally begins from the date the government admits a person to the United States as a CPR or grants CPR status. CPR status ends if and when rescinded or terminated. For example, CPRs may lose status if they do not apply to remove conditions, if they do not meet certain requirements to remove the conditions on their status during the required time period, or if USCIS denies a petition to remove conditions.
LPRs Applying for Naturalization
LPRs (and CPRs) 18 years of age and over are required to carry their PRCs (or other proof of registration). Applying for naturalization does not change this requirement.
LPRs in deportation, exclusion, or removal proceedings are entitled to evidence of LPR status until ordered excluded, deported, or removed.
If an LPR is in proceedings, USCIS reviews the Form I-90 and totality of the evidence in the record to determine if a new PRC will be issued or if the applicant will receive evidence of status in the form of a temporary permanent resident document.
A CPR is a noncitizen admitted for permanent residence on a conditional basis for a period of 2 years because the noncitizen sought LPR status:
CPRs are issued PRCs by USCIS with an expiration date of 2 years from the date of obtaining permanent resident status. CPRs whose status is not expiring within 90 days may file a Form I-90 to replace a PRC for the reasons provided in the form instructions. If a CPR is eligible to receive a replacement card, the expiration date of the replacement card will be the same as that of the prior card (2 years from the date of becoming a CPR).
In general, a CPR is not eligible to file a Form I-90 for any reason during the 90-day period before the second anniversary of obtaining permanent resident status. The expiration date on the PRC should be the second anniversary of the noncitizen obtaining permanent resident status. This ensures the CPR files the appropriate petition to remove the conditions during the 90-day period before the second anniversary of obtaining permanent resident status. The receipt notice for such a petition to remove conditions serves to extend evidence of CPR status while the petition to remove conditions is pending. The receipt notice, when presented with the expired PRC, may be used to prove employment authorization and authorization to return to the United States after temporary foreign travel.
If a CPR files a Form I-90 during the 90 days before the expiration of conditional status, USCIS denies the application and advises the applicant to file the appropriate petition to remove the conditions.
An Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card (Form I-90) must be used by an LPR to request replacement of a PRC expiring within 6 months. Additional reasons for which LPRs must file Form I-90 include, but are not limited to, replacement of a lost, stolen, destroyed, or mutilated PRC, or when the LPR’s name or other biographic information has legally changed since issuance of the PRC.
CPRs may use Form I-90 to request replacement of a PRC that is not expiring within 90 days for reasons that include, but are not limited to, replacement of a lost, stolen, destroyed, or mutilated PRC, or when the CPR’s name or other biographic information has legally changed since issuance of the PRC. CPRs may not use Form I-90 to request removal of the conditions on residence.
The Form I-90 instructions include a full list of reasons to request replacement of a PRC and further information on filing requirements for each reason. An applicant must file Form I-90 according to the form instructions. Applicants can access the current edition of the form on the USCIS website.
An applicant may submit a Form I-90 by mail or electronic filing as indicated in the form instructions. However, applicants may not file online if they are requesting a fee waiver.
An applicant should refer to the Form I-90 instructions for required initial evidence based on the particular reason for which he or she is seeking a replacement card. For example, if an applicant requests a replacement PRC because the existing card has incorrect data because of DHS error, the applicant must submit proof of the correct name or biographical data and return the original PRC with the incorrect data to USCIS when filing Form I-90.
Replacement of a PRC requires submission of biometrics at the USCIS Application Support Center (ASC) servicing the applicant’s place of residence in the United States. USCIS generally schedules the applicant for a biometrics appointment after receiving a properly filed application. USCIS notifies the applicant of an appointment by sending the applicant a Notice of Action (Form I-797C) stating the date, time, and location of the appointment.
For purposes of a request to replace a PRC, USCIS generally collects the following biometrics from the applicant: photograph, signature, and fingerprints.
When an applicant appears at an ASC to provide biometrics, the ASC may take actions that include, but are not limited to, the following:
Verifying applicant identity;
Verifying biographic changes, if applicable; and
If an applicant fails to appear for the scheduled biometrics appointment, his or her Form I-90 is considered abandoned and may be denied, unless USCIS receives a properly filed change of address or rescheduling request before the scheduled appointment.
Biometrics must be completed within 90 days of the biometrics appointment described in the initial Form I-797C. The application may be denied for abandonment if biometrics are not completed within this timeframe. If an applicant is unable to appear for the initial scheduled date, the applicant may request to reschedule the appointment along with a sufficient explanation for the applicant’s inability to appear on that date. The applicant should submit the rescheduling request before the scheduled appointment, otherwise USCIS may deny the application for failure to appear at a scheduled biometrics appointment. The applicant should follow the instructions on the Form I-797C to request rescheduling.
LPRs are entitled to evidence of status. In some cases, LPRs may require temporary evidence of LPR status. For example, a new LPR may require temporary evidence of status while waiting to receive his or her initial PRC or a Form I-90 applicant may require temporary evidence of status while waiting to receive his or her replacement PRC. USCIS may also provide temporary evidence of status to LPRs in deportation, exclusion, or removal proceedings.
USCIS sends a receipt notice (Notice of Action (Form I-797)) to applicants who properly file a Form I-90 to replace their expiring PRC. The notice serves as proof of USCIS’ receipt of the applicant’s Form I-90. The notice also serves as evidence of USCIS’ extension of the validity of the applicant’s PRC for the time period specified in the notice (when the LPR presents the notice together with the PRC). In these cases, the notice combined with the expiring or expired PRC serve as evidence of LPR status and may be used to prove employment authorization and authorization to return to the United States after temporary foreign travel.
USCIS may issue temporary evidence of LPR status in other formats, such as an Alien Documentation, Identification and Telecommunication (ADIT) stamp (also known as an I-551 stamp). For example, LPRs who are not in possession of their PRC may need an ADIT stamp as temporary evidence of LPR status and employment authorization.
LPRs whose Form I-90 is still pending adjudication and whose PRC and extension notice have expired, may also request documentation of status for travel, employment, or other purposes. USCIS determines if the requestor should receive an ADIT stamp and has the discretion to determine the validity period based on the LPR’s situation.
LPRs may obtain an ADIT stamp by calling the USCIS Contact Center to schedule an appointment with a USCIS field office. An officer may only place an ADIT stamp on Arrival/Departure Record (Form I-94) or in an unexpired passport.
The officer reviews evidence submitted by the applicant to verify that the applicant is an LPR. An officer verifies an applicant’s status using USCIS systems and records.
Officers should ensure biographic and biometric security checks are completed, and remain valid through adjudication of the application.
USCIS may approve a Form I-90 if the applicant meets the following requirements:
The application is signed or certified via internet filing;
All applicable fees have been paid (unless waived or not required);
The applicant established his or her identity;
The applicant is an LPR or CPR;
Biometric requirements have been completed and remain valid at the time of the decision; and
The applicant established all other eligibility criteria for the specific basis he or she filed Form I-90.
If the officer approves the Form I-90, USCIS sends both the approval notice and the new PRC to the applicant’s U.S. mailing address. PRCs cannot be mailed to addresses outside the United States.
USCIS may deny an application to replace a PRC if the applicant fails to:
Establish LPR or CPR status;
Establish his or her identity;
Attend an interview (if required); or
Otherwise meet the eligibility criteria applicable to his or her Form I-90.
If the officer denies the Form I-90, the applicant cannot appeal the decision. However, the applicant may file a motion to reopen or reconsider. A denial also does not preclude the applicant from filing a new Form I-90 if he or she can establish eligibility.
To request a motion to reopen or motion to reconsider a denial, an applicant must file a Notice of Appeal or Motion (Form I-290B) with fee, unless waived. An applicant should follow the current form instructions to properly file a motion.
An applicant has 30 days from the date of the decision to submit a motion. Officers may use discretion to excuse failure to file a motion to reopen within this time period if the applicant demonstrates the delay was reasonable and beyond the control of the applicant.
A Service motion to reopen is initiated by USCIS to reopen a case in order to change the decision or to correct information for card production. When USCIS initiates a Service motion, an officer issues a formal notice to the applicant advising him or her that the case has been reopened. If the new decision is favorable to the applicant, the officer updates appropriate systems and generates an automatic approval notice separate from the motion.
If the decision is unfavorable to the applicant, an officer provides 30 days for the applicant to submit information in support of his or her case. USCIS may extend the time period for good cause shown. If the applicant does not wish to submit any information relating to the motion, the applicant may waive the 30-day period. If the applicant fails to submit the required information within the allocated timeframe or the information the applicant submits does not overcome the grounds for denial, an officer may proceed to make a final determination on the motion and change the decision on the Form I-90, if applicable. A new period for an applicant to file a motion to reopen or reconsider begins from the date of issuance of the new adverse decision on the Form I-90.
[^ 6] See INA 216(c) and INA 216A(c). USCIS may also terminate a CPR’s status if, during the 2-year conditional resident period, USCIS determines the qualifying marriage or entrepreneurship that formed the basis of the conditional permanent residence was improper. See INA 216(b) and INA 216A(b).
[^ 12] If the CPR has been misclassified and should have been admitted or adjusted status as an LPR without conditions on their permanent residence, the misclassified CPR may file a Form I-90 even within the 90-day period before the second anniversary of obtaining permanent resident status.
[^ 15] See 8 CFR 264.5(b). See Form I-90 instructions (PDF, 361.11 KB) for a full list of reasons. LPRs must also use Form I-90 to request a replacement of a prior edition of the alien registration card issued on Form AR-3, AR-103, or I-151. See 8 CFR 264.5(c).
[^ 20] Form I-90 applicants who are commuters may be issued a Request for Evidence of a U.S. address for USCIS to use to schedule the location of a biometric services appointment.
[^ 22] If an applicant is temporarily outside of the United States due to U.S. military or government orders and he or she is required to include a biometrics service fee when submitting Form I-90, the applicant should also include a properly completed Form FD-258 (fingerprint card) and a passport-style photo with the application. See Form I-90 instructions (PDF, 361.11 KB) for more information.
[^ 23] The ASC may verify portions of the name, date of birth, and gender.
[^ 26] See 8 CFR 264.5(g) (“Issuance of evidence of permanent residence to an alien who had permanent resident status when the proceedings commenced shall not affect those proceedings”). See Section B, Lawful Permanent Residents in Proceedings [11 USCIS-PM B.2(B)].
[^ 27] Before January 2021, USCIS issued an extension sticker on an applicant’s current PRC if the applicant had a pending Form I-90 to replace an expiring PRC to allow for time to process the new card. As of that date, USCIS began phasing out issuing extension stickers and, instead, started issuing revised notices. See the USCIS.gov news alert.
[^ 29] For more information on Requests for Evidence, see Volume 1, General Policies and Procedures, Part E, Adjudications, Chapter 6, Evidence, Section F, Requests for Evidence and Notices of Intent to Deny [1 USCIS-PM E.6(F)].
[^ 31] Applicants may use Case Status Online to check on the status of their Form I-90. If Case Status Online indicates that USCIS has mailed a new PRC, the applicant should be provided with a U.S. Postal Service (USPS) tracking number. If Case Status Online and the USPS tracking number indicate a PRC has been mailed and delivered, but the applicant has not received the PRC, the applicant should inquire with USPS immediately. For more information, see the Form I-90 webpage. A PRC issued to a commuters is mailed to the port-of-entry designated by an applicant. For more information, see Chapter 4, Commuter Cards [11 USCIS-PM B.4].
[^ 32] Applicants temporarily outside of the United States due to U.S. military or government orders may be serviced by the U.S. armed forces or U.S. diplomatic postal systems.