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Completing Form I-9 with a Permanent Resident Card

March 20, 2018

 

 


Summary: This article explains how to complete Section 2 of Form I-9 when the new hire presents a Permanent Resident Card.


 

A Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) may present a Permanent Resident Card as their identification document. A Permanent Resident Card is a List A document that shows both identity and work authorization, so no other document should be accepted or described on the form.
 

When you describe the Permanent Resident Card in the List A column of page 2, you will record the following:

  • Document Title: "Permanent Resident Card" (optional: add the form number, "I-551")

  • Issuing Authority: "US Citizenship and Immigration Services" or "USCIS". (Also possible: "DOJ Immigration and Naturalization Service"; check the card)

  • Document Number: Three letters followed by 10 digits. See below for more about the Document Number

  • Expiration Date: Find the expiration date on the face of the card. The card must not be expired.

 

About Document Numbers

 

The Permanent Resident Card document number will be in the format of THREE letters followed by TEN digits​ and will NOT be the same as the USCIS/Alien Number​. Depending on the card's version, the number may be on the front or back.
 

On some card versions, there are three lines of computer-generated characters. The Document Number is always in the top line, to the right. In those three lines of text, you may also see the letters "USA" followed by at least 10 digits. That is not the Document Number.

 

Pro Tip

 

One of the best ways to learn how to complete Form I-9 correctly is to download the USCIS' fillable PDF Form I-9. The form is dynamic and interactive. For example, when you select "Lawful Permanent Resident" as the employee's citizenship status in Section 1, a drop-down field appears in the "Document Title" area of the List A column on page 2. That field contains the List A documents that might be presented by an LPR. (Important: You must view the fillable PDF in Adobe Reader or Acrobat for the dynamic fields to work.)

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