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11 Second DUSI Intro Video
Thanks for tuning in, my name is Miatrai Brown, and I am a U.S. immigration attorney based in Washington DC. I am also the Principal Attorney at Direct U.S. Immigration where we work with clients in all 50 states and around the world. Before we start, click the like and subscribe button to follow our immigration hub to get the latest immigration information that could be vital to your case. And also, be sure to stick around until the end to get a bonus tip on how to move forward after your green card is lost or stolen.
As you know, if your green card is lost or stolen, you may also be wondering about green card identity theft. Identity theft is when an impostor obtains personal information, such as a green card or social security card, to impersonate someone else.
With that information, the impostor may obtain new credit cards, make unauthorized purchases, and temporarily ruin your credit score which could be difficult and take time to rebuild. What’s worse, the thief may provide false identification to police, creating a criminal record or leaving outstanding arrest warrants for you, as the victim of the green card identity theft.
5 Things to Do After Green Card Identity Theft
If your wallet or personally identifiable information is lost or stolen, you must take steps to protect yourself from identity theft.
- Take Inventory and Get a Police Report
Make a list of all the items that were lost or stolen. It is particularly important to know if your social security number was exposed. The number is on your social security card but is sometimes also included on other documents. An identity thief may use green cards and driver’s licenses as sources of personally identifiable information.
Report the theft (or loss) to your local police station. Give them a list of all the items that were lost or stolen. It’s unlikely that the police will be able to recover your property, but the report puts the theft/loss on record. If a thief uses your green card or personal information in a crime, the report helps you prove it wasn’t you that committed the crime. In addition, it is important to request a copy of the report. You might need it later.
- Contact Creditors and Monitor Bills and Statements
First, contact your bank, credit card companies, or other financial institutions and accounts that may be the first target of an identity thief. Your credit card company will likely cancel the card, making it useless for making purchases. The bank will then re-issue you a card with a different number. During this time, keep a close eye on your bills and account statements.
If you have online access to your accounts, monitor the activity to catch fraudulent activity early (before your next statement comes in the mail). Things to look for include:
- > Purchases you did not make
- > Bank withdrawals you did not make
- > Change of your address that you did not expect
- Monitor Credit Reports
A credit report is a detailed report of an individual’s credit history. Credit bureaus collect information and create credit reports based on that information. Lenders use the reports and other details to determine an individual’s creditworthiness for new lines of credit.
- Replace Your Identification
You will also want to replace your identification as soon as possible.
- Contact Your Immigration Attorney
Be sure to contact your immigration attorney. They will assist you with next steps and how to obtain a new green card.
Replace a Green Card
Replacing a green card is a simple process but time-consuming. You’ll need to file Form I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card, with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), along with the filing fee.
In some states, you will need to have valid proof of permanent resident status (green card) to get your driver’s license replaced. And you may need a driver’s license to replace your Social Security card.
Replace a Social Security Card
You can replace your Social Security card for free if it was lost or stolen. However, to prove your U.S. immigration status, you must show the Social Security Administration (SSA) your green card. You must present original documents or copies certified by the agency that issued them. Use the Application for a Social Security Card and take it to your local SSA office.
Replace a Driver’s License
Each state has a different procedure and requirements to replace a driver’s license. In many cases, you will need to show proof of your permanent residence. You may also be able to place a stolen/lost card warning on your file. If you believe that an identity thief is using your license, you may be able to request a license number change.
As promised, here’s some bonus information that you may not know about:
Green card identity theft is a serious problem. Green cards can be a popular commodity for identity thieves. The green card alone isn’t beneficial to an identity thief. It becomes valuable if the thief also gains access to your Social Security number and other personally identifiable information. Please don’t carry your Social Security card in your wallet or purse; it’s unnecessary. Keep the card at home and memorize the number.
I hope you found this video helpful. Subscribe if this content or information helps you in any way, comment below if you want me to talk about something in specific, and share this resource because you never know who needs answers to these questions. Additionally, if you have any specific questions about this video as they pertain to your unique circumstances, please schedule a consultation with us at the link below. I’ll see you in the next video.
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