A green card grants an immigrant the right to live and work in the United States, so receiving a green card can be an exciting time for an immigrant. Making sure a green card arrives safely is important so that the residency status of an immigrant is not in doubt. Even so, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website warns that sometimes green cards might not reach their intended recipient

Thanks to tracking numbers provided by the U.S. Postal Service, immigrants can track a green card as it travels to their address after the government mails the card. The USPS even offers Informed Delivery, which sends daily images of the mail as it travels to the recipient. However, even with these measures, some immigrants might experience delays in receiving their green card. 

Delays in card delivery 

In the event tracking shows that the card reached an address but the card has not actually arrived there, the card might have reached the post office but did not progress any further. The immigrant should contact the post office to verify the status of the card. However, sometimes cards may not reach an address due to confusion as to where the card should go. 

The government will typically send a card to the address listed on the green card application. However, some immigrants may change their address before receiving a card. If so, they should notify the USCIS and the post office about their change in their address. Also, some immigrants choose to have the government send their green card to their representative instead of their home address, which could also cause some delay. 

Replacing a card 

It may be possible that a card gets lost or destroyed before it ever reaches its recipient. According to the USCIS, immigrants who lose a card should file a Form I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card with the federal government. Applicants may file this form by sending it through an electronic device like a phone or tablet, or by using the mail. The USCIS will work with an applicant to help secure the replacement card.