View Full Version : Help on a DMV and immigraiton matter

05-13-2005, 05:39 PM
It's that time again: I have to renew my driver's license. And now (At least here in New Jersey) we have the whole new 6 point ID thing, which has turned into a nightmare for me.

I lost 1 day of work going the first time and was told that I needed my Permanent Resident Card or my passport. I loose another day (Couldn't find my passport) coming back and am told that neither is valid because they're so old, and the picture of me in them is of me as a little kid (I do look cute though :) ).

But they don't tell me what to do about the situation. I checked online with the immigration office in my area (Newark NJ) and it seems that I have to file a form to petition for a new Permanent Resident Card (form I-90) and will have to pay a $255 dollar fee (ouch!).

I'm concerned though because time is of the essense, my license expires in a week (Procrastinator that I am)!

I want to be sure of the process and how long it will take for this to get done. I'm assuming that the new card will take some time since the form has to be processed, but the online form suggests that I'll be able to get a temporary ID that I can use to get my new license once I go in for fingerprinting. So my questions are:

1. How long does it take to get an appointment at the immigraiton office typically? Anyone have any experience? They say the facility is open weekdays by appointment ONLY.

2. Will they give me proof of ID once I get an appointment, or will they then schedule another appointment for fingerprints and I'll get my proof of ID then.

3. Should I be forced to drive with an expired license (I hope not! But I need to work to be able to pay to renew my license, and I need to drive to do so... I think they call this a paradox) and get caught, will I be facing a ticket, or jail time?

Thanx for any help or advice you can give me.

- Kin, in quite a pickle.

05-13-2005, 06:07 PM
I'm bumping your thread because this is so important. Wish I had some real information, though.

Good Luck.

05-14-2005, 03:27 AM
1) The local (Bay Area) INS offices are rumored to be rife with delay; yours may differ. Use the best bureaucratic-coping skills with them; ask if your case can be worked as a priority; bring all conceivable papers with you.

3) A single ticket is usually a violation, not a crime, and normally doesn't involve jail time.

If your license expires, you may be forced to find another way to get to work.

Because if getting a ticket interferes with your 'desirability' as a resident (WAG--I can't say for sure it does), the results might hit you harder than 30 days in jail.

05-14-2005, 03:58 AM
To what MaryEFoo suggested may I add the following
- Apply for what ever you need now before the old stuff expires.
- Carry copies of all the paperwork with you if you do drive after your license expires. If you get stopped, being able to prove that you are trying to comply might, and I do mean might get the cop to cut you some slack. I am not suggesting that you do drive with a expired license, just suggesting what to do if you make that choice.

Good luck

05-14-2005, 08:58 AM
Thanks for the advice guys. I sure hope it doesn't come to me driving with an expired license. I'm going to be making an appointment with the Newark office monday morning. ::crosses fingers::

Eva Luna
05-14-2005, 12:40 PM
When you go in to Newark, make sure to tell them you want a new I-551 stamp in your passport, not just to file a new I-90 to replace your green card. If at all possible, you should replace your passport if you can't find it; it will make your life a lot easier in these sorts of situations in the future.

Man, I just looked, and boy, have they jacked up the fees for the I-90. It used to cost a lot less than that.

BTW, as long as you can prove that the old green card actually belongs to you, it sucks that the NJ DMV won't accept it - even if your card expires, it doesn't mean you're not a permanent resident; it just means you need to update the card.

Normally when you file the I-90, you will get a receipt notice showing that you have filed it. The Vermont Service Center, which covers NJ, is taking about 2 months to process them. You can find processing times here:


I have no idea what they are in Newark, but ask if there's any way to expedite it since you need it for your driver's license. They will probably say no, but it can't hurt to ask.

You can make appointments online via Infopass - in fatc, that's the only way most offices are allowing you to make appointments these days anyway. Link:


Good luck - I know from the experience of clients that the NJ DMV is a huge pain and extremely inflexible. That's what happens when you get state bureaucrats trying to undertsand and enforce federal laws.

Eva Luna, U.S. Immigration Paralegal

05-14-2005, 09:10 PM
Eva Luna, you rock! :)

Thank you so much!

05-17-2005, 08:10 AM
Argh, this is terrible. Infopass appears to be the only way to schedule an appointment and it's been telling me that there are no information appointments available for the past week.

I hope this doesn't go on for too long. Anyone known on average, how long it will take to get an appointment?

I'm going to keep trying every day...