WASHINGTON — A call from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has asked approximately 8,543 recipients of Permanent Resident Cards to return the Green Card due to a production error has caused much alarm and anxiety among new immigrants.
A USCIS statement, however, assured that the recall in no way impacts on the legal status of permanent residents and that a replacement card will be provided no longer than 15 days after the return of the incorrect one.
Most of the Green Cards were issued and approved Form I-751, for spouses of U.S. citizens. According to a statement by the USCIS the cards were printed with an incorrect “Resident Since” date and mailed between February and April 2018.
The immigration agency released a statement saying that those affected by the recall of the green cards were the spouses of those with US citizenship who had applied for permanent residency using the form 1-751, which is a petition to have conditions on Residence removed.
The USCIS statement also added that the Agency will notify everyone affected by the technical error, either personally or via their attorneys.
Those affected will now need to return their Green Cards in a prepaid envelope within no more than 20 days from receipt of the notice or to return them in person to a US Citizenship and Immigration Services field office.
The USCIS advisory added that the reason the production error is a problem is due to the fact that the incorrect date provides residents with the wrong details about when they will be able to apply for full US citizenship.
According to reports, the recall does not affect these Green Card holders’ status as lawful permanent residents. If affected individuals need to travel internationally or prove their lawful permanent residence while they wait for a replacement card, they may contact the USCIS Contact Center at 800-375-5283 to determine if they need additional proof.
Spouses of U.S. citizens may apply for naturalization after three years of permanent residency and must meet other requirements. The incorrect date on these cards could lead applicants to wait longer than necessary to apply to become U.S. citizens.
USCIS will send notices to individuals who received the incorrect Green Cards and to their attorneys of record if they have one.
It is important to note that receiving an incorrectly dated Green Card in no way implicates the Green Card holder’s status as a lawful permanent resident of the United States. If an affected individual needs to travel internationally or prove his or her lawful permanent resident status for any other purpose while he or she waits for a replacement Green Card, the individual may contact the USCIS Contact Center at 800-375-5283 for guidance on whether he or she will need additional proof.