Expired Green Card Penalties

Expired Green Card Penalties: Consequences of Not Renewing Your Green Card

Many people wonder what expired green card penalties could be. Contrary to that assumption, there are no penalties or fines for an expired green card; however, the consequences can be quite costly. You may be able to move around with an expired green card but it will cause a lot of problems you could have avoided by renewing your permanent residency.

Here are the 5 common problems you will likely face from an expired green card.

  1. Getting a job

Employers in the United States will require you to fill a Form I-9 which will be used to verify your identity and permission to work in the U.S. This is to checkmate the taking over of jobs in the U.S. by illegal immigrants. You will have to submit your green card alongside the I-9 you have filled no later than the day you started working. If your green card is expired, you may lose the job as employers are required by the law not to accept it. This is one of the costly expired green card penalties (or consequences).

  1. Obtaining a professional license

Professional licenses are a form of government regulation which involves giving official permission to pursue a particular profession. A professional license is required for a variety of occupations including medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, nursing, real estate, insurance, and many others. One of the criteria for obtaining a professional license is a valid green card, meaning you won’t be able to do your job if your green card is expired.

  1. Re-entering the U.S.

For starters, one of the expired green card penalties regarding traveling is that airlines won’t board a passenger with a green card that’s expired. The law requires airlines to check for valid passports as well as proof of permanent residence before boarding. However, if your green card expires while you’re outside the United States, you will have to cross several hurdles to get back in. For example, you will be delayed since you can’t prove your permanent residence status and then you will have to pay a high re-entry fee. Even with all these, you’re still not guaranteed of a speedy process as your permission is at the discretion of the CPB officer.

  1. Buying a house

If you’re looking to buy a home as a permanent residence, you will be eligible to get a mortgage just like any U.S. citizen. You will be required to submit a photocopy of your card and your Social Security number to your potential lender as one of the guidelines to obtaining a mortgage for a home purchase. An expired green card can make it hard for your home purchase plans to sail through.

  1. Renewing a driver’s license

Like all the other points, you need to prove that you reside in a particular state before you can renew your driver’s license. The rules for renewing driver’s license vary from state to state but you will need to submit a photocopy of your green card as well as a proof legal presence.


While there are no expired green card penalties, the consequences for carrying an expired permanent residency card can be costly. If your green card has expired, do not procrastinate before renewing.

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Easy Way to Get a Green Card
Read More About Green Card Organization