The Permanent Resident (PR) card

What does it mean?

How do I apply?

Who gets one?

Why did you make me wait?

When will I know if I have it?

Can I use my PR card outside Canada?

Will it help me immigrate faster?

What Permanent Residents Can Do

If you are a permanent resident of Canada, there are some things you can do without having to apply for citizenship. Here are the most common ones.

1. Work in Canada

You don’t have to become a citizen to work here. You just have to meet certain requirements. If you are a Canadian citizen, you must have lived in Canada for three out of the five years prior to applying for PR. If you are a foreign national, you must have been living in Canada for 10 years. In either case, you cannot be working in another job while waiting for approval.

2. Get health care

The same applies to getting medical treatment. If you are a citizen, you must live in Canada for six months every year. If you are a foreigner, you must have spent at least 12 months in Canada each year.

3. Vote

Foreigners who want to vote in elections must have been living in the country for one year. They must also have lived in Canada continuously for four out of the seven years preceding the election. Canadians who wish to vote must have lived in the country for 11 out of 14 years.

Losing your permanent resident status

The Trump administration announced Friday it plans to end the Obama-era program known as “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals” (DACA). This decision affects nearly 800,000 undocumented immigrants brought into the United States as children.

President Donald Trump signed an executive order in September 2017 halting DACA, calling it unconstitutional. But the Supreme Court ruled against him in June 2018.

In his announcement Friday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions cited Congress’ failure to pass legislation dealing with DACA. He added that “the president does not wish to sign another bill granting amnesty to those illegally in our country.”

But there are some exceptions under current immigration law. If you meet certain requirements, including having come here before age 16, you could still qualify for DACA.

If you’re one of the people affected by the policy change, you’ll have until March 5, 2020 to apply for renewal.

I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status

The I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, must be submitted within 180 days of filing Form N-400, Application to Register Permanent Resident Alien. This deadline applies regardless of whether you are applying for adjustment of status under Section 245(i), 245A, or 245F of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). If you do not file the application within 180 days of filing your Form N-400, you cannot apply for adjustment of status unless it is possible for you to depart the United States prior to the expiration of the period specified in INA 245(a)(1).

You must complete the following steps to file your I-485:

Step 1: Complete and submit Form I-485, Application To Register As A Permanent Resident Or Adjust Status, along with supporting documents listed on the instructions page. You must attach each document separately. For example, you cannot combine multiple documents into one PDF file.

Step 2. File your Form N-400 with USCIS.

Step 3: Submit your completed Form I-485, including required attachments, to the nearest U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office.

If you fail to comply with the deadline, you may lose your ability to apply for adjustment of status. Please check our FAQs for further information.

What This Form Can Help You Do

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Green Cards and Permanent Residence in the U.S.

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced on Thursday that it will begin accepting applications for permanent residence cards (PRCs), known colloquially as green cards. PRCs are granted to people who meet certain criteria, including having been lawfully admitted into the US for permanent residence, being physically present in the US for three out of five years, and paying taxes.

Applicants must submit a petition to USCIS, along with supporting documents such as tax returns, bank statements, and proof of employment.  They must also pay $495 for each application filed. Applications are accepted online. Applicants must complete their paperwork within 90 days of filing the initial request.

Apply for, renew, or replace a Green Card

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it plans to begin accepting applications for the 2018 fiscal year on October 15th. This is the second year in a row where USCIS has opened up the application process. Last year, the agency began accepting applications for the 2017 fiscal year starting April 5th.

Applicants must submit Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, along with supporting documents such as proof of identity and employment history. A fee of $325 applies per person. The forms are available online, though applicants will still need to print out the form and mail it to USCIS. Applicants will receive a receipt via email once the form is submitted.

In addition to filing the I-485 form, applicants must also pay a biometrics processing fee of $110. They must also provide fingerprints, photographs, and either a digital photo or a video interview. The deadline for submitting the required documentation is January 29, 2018.

For those who do not meet the requirements for expedited processing, USCIS will accept the I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, along with supporting documents like a passport, work authorization document, or visa stamp. Applicants will have until February 27, 2018 to file the form.

If you plan to apply for permanent residence, make sure you follow the instructions carefully. If you miss deadlines, you could lose your chance to become a legal resident of the United States.

Green Card Eligibility Categories

The United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it has added five categories to the Green Card Lottery Program. These are:

1. Employment-based immigrant petitions filed under category I-140;

2. Optional practical training (OPT) petitions filed under category H-1B;

3. Labor certification cases filed under category L-1A;

4. nonimmigrant visa petitions filed under category B-1/B-2; and

5. Asylum applications filed under category 208

According to USCIS, the agency is now accepting applications for the following categories:

Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR)

The term LPR refers to people who are legal residents of the United States but do not hold citizenship. This includes green card holders, those living legally in the US without documentation, and undocumented immigrants.