U.S.Citizenship and Immigraton Services.
Permanent Resident Card
The Permanent Resident Card, Form I-551, is issued to all Permanent Residents as evidence of alien registration and their permanent status in the US. The card must be in your possession at all times. This requirement means that you are not only required to have a currently valid Form I-551 at all times, but also that you must carry your currently valid Form I-551 on your person at all times.
Do you carry your GC with you all the time?
ICE Raids on WinCO Grocery Stores, Magic Valley Idaho 魚拓
As I said in another thread, I've been in an ICE raid with a boyfriend who was Hispanic. He was not carrying his ID as he was just across the street from his apartment accompanying me while I bought something. I am a non-Hispanic American who was on the ground and almost cuffed before they let me show my student ID (which normally isn't a valid ID but I guess since I didn't speak with an accent it was ok ). I look very much like the American stereotypical view of a Latina and speak Spanish near fluently and speak it often in public... after that day, it's been a constant fear that something like that will happen again. And it's incredibly frightening.
ICE raids are some of the most ridiculous things ever. They are very traumatic- especially to children. Working in an immigrant advocacy group, we dealt with several LEGAL IMMIGRANTS who had their doors knocked in at 4AM with ICE officers storming in and grabbing them and their children out of bed. Then- whoops, sorry, didn't realize you were legal. You'd think they'd get their research straight- especially when dealing with people who were already TRAUMATIZED by similar events in Central America during the Civil Wars there (or people who lived through the "Dirty Wars" in Argentina).
Have you been in a raid to know how it feels? I'm certainly not exaggerating. I'm 19 years old and I still get nightmares of men with guns rushing into a teeny tiny corner grocery store ordering people onto the ground. Not something you expect when you're just running across the street for some soda.
Here is a first hand experience.
This happened to me in year 2000. I was walking from Train station to work (4 Blocks). On the way, a Border Patrol car (yes, inside the city and not anywhere near a border) stopped in front of me while waiting for the WALK sign. She asked me to show the immigration documents and asked if I had any arm. I said that I am a legal resident and do not have any kind of arm. She then asked the immigration documents. I didn't had documents. I told her the POE and entry date details. She called the POE and checked two terminals and confirmed that I was a legal resident. She let me go. She also told me to carry Original Passport or immigration documents or else have $100 citation. (I didn't carry the PP for the fear of loss).
My hubby was just approved yesterday for his GC.
At the end of our interview the IO told him to expect to receive the card in about 4 weeks and to always carry it on his person. She also handed him a letter containing regulations required of all PRs which states:
"The permanent resident card must be kept on you at all times. This is the law and can have jail time and fines if it is not complied with. The card should always be with you, just like you keep your drivers license with you at all times. You are not permitted to keep a copy of the card with you. We recommend you keep a copy of your card at home in a safe place in case you ever lose the real card. (This will make it easier for you to obtain a replacement card.)"
Also is there any Legal case in which LPR (GC holder) is deported or jailed for not carrying his GC with him (except at the international or domestic airports or bordercrossings or near the boreder) when stoped for the routine checkup of the Licence etc by police or any other govt agent.
People used to feel this way about the AR-11. And then INS started deporting a few select aliens to make a point. So, hands up everyone who feels that filing the AR-11 is optional?
Do you want to be the person used to prove a point?
Taken literally, you would need to have it in your hand or pocket even when jogging or playing sports, so technically those foreign-born permanent resident players in the NBA and NHL are violating the law because they don't have space to store the card on their person when playing.
However, if every law is to be taken literally, everybody who isn't in a coma is violating the law. For example, in New York it is illegal to talk in an elevator, and in Tucson (Arizona) it is illegal for women to wear pants.
Carrying a copy of the card won't conform to the letter of the law, but at least it has information on it that can be verified if you are taken to a police station or immigration detention center, which may spare you from being detained for days or weeks if you are arrested for another offense or taken into custody by ICE for being suspected of being an illegal alien.
It's also interesting that the monetary penalty of $100 for not having the card on you is less than the cost of replacing the card (of course, the jail time of up to 30 days is a much bigger penalty, but has anybody ever gone to jail for this for longer than a night?).
Every one needs to think and handle their situation differently, if you work at a manufacturing plant that hires lot of illegal workers (like my current client in Dallas), chances are sooner or later there will be an ICE raid and you don't want to be caught without a Green Card with you.
Your Green Card - Always, Always Carry it With You魚拓
Recent news that AMTRAK is increasing security on its trains as well as stories that DHS agents are profiling "foreign-looking" AMTRAK passengers and demanding to see identity documents serves as a reminder to permanent residents to always carry their green cards with them.
First of all--it's the law.
Secondly, and as a practical matter, if you are singled out on a AMTRAK train or a Greyhound bus and you don't have your green card on you, you're inviting big problems. At the very least, you're in for inconvenience and hassle; at worst, you could be detained.
Report: ICE Agents Pressured to Meet Arrest Quotas
Arrested Lansdowne workers released by ICE
By Jason Jacks
Source: Loudoun Times-Mirror
TUESDAY, APRIL 22 2008 魚拓
Johnson-Firth speculated one reason for the mass release is lack of room.
“ICE has no bed space,” she said.
Another reason, she added, is that at the time of the arrests, some may not have had their documentation with them.
“Later on, a family member might have produced a green card,” she added.
Of the 24 men arrested in the raid, one proved that he was in the country legally, 19 were deported or voluntarily returned to their native countries and four remain in immigration proceedings, said Justin Cox, an attorney with CASA representing some of the men.
Dozens arrested in Maryland immigration raid
Updated 3/30/2007 魚拓
Some people who are not United States
citizens have been arrested or detained by
the U.S. government. Learn how to protect
yourself if this happens to you!'(PDF）
What You Need to Know to Protect Yourself from Raids