Benefits of a Green Card Resident
An immigrant with a permanent resident card is a Green Card resident of the United States. An immigration resident card holder has some of the same rights of a naturally born U.S. citizen. With a permanent resident card status, an immigrant can perform the following:
- You can live and work in the United States. To work, an immigrant must complete a work eligibility form for verification – I-9
- You can apply for a Social Security Card
- You can apply for a Driver’s License
- You can travel with certain limitations
- You can work at a career of your choosing (there are security jobs that might be excluded)
- You can attend an educational institution
- You are protected by the federal, state, and local laws within each domain
Responsibilities of a New Citizen
A United States permanent resident card says that you are now a verified citizen whose responsibilities involve:
- Obey the laws of the land
- Pay taxes and file taxes
- Support the democratic form of government by which the country is governed
- Register with the military from age 18 to 25.
If an immigrant is holding a two-year Green Card, it means that you have a ‘conditional’ permanent resident card. After the second year, an immigrant must become a Green Card holder by filing another USCIS form which is entitled ‘a removal of conditions document.
As a Green Card resident, you can travel internationally. With your Green Card, you can apply to receive a passport which can be used for temporary travel. However, when an immigrant returns to the U.S., a Green Card must be used for identification.
A U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officer will ask several questions to confirm your legal residency, plus the officer will ask for a Green Card and supporting documents like a passport, a driver’s license, or an I.D. card.
Green Card Assistance
A Green Card is an important document for immigrants. It can be obtained by filling out a permanent resident card application which is the I-485 Form. The Form is free and can be downloaded from the USCIS website.
For a Green Card citizen, there is much to learn about their new U.S. homeland. The USCIS provides a plethora of documents on the U.S., from its historical beginnings to the present federal government structure.
The USCIS provides a succinct publication on more of your new rights and responsibilities which is downloadable. The agency also introduces Green Card holders to the Library of Congress for additional information. They provide a short informative film on citizenship information.
If English is not the second language of a Green Card holder, the USCIS further offers multilingual services and outreach documentation. New U.S. citizens who need help with English can receive language assistance from the USCIS agency Language Access Working Group (LAWG).
USCIS/LAWG officials meet with new Green Card citizens in a group environment to help them learn English and to ensure that the U.S. immigrants have access to immigration benefit services as outlined by the USCIS agency.