Advance parole is a travel permit issued to non-U.S. citizens who have pending applications for immigration benefits and who have applied to change their immigration status in the U.S. to travel abroad and reenter the U.S.
Who needs an Advance Parole?
Those seeking to travel outside the U.S. and reenter may need an advance parole document if the individual:
- has applied for adjustment of status and wishes to travel abroad while their application to adjust status is pending.
- is a Temporary Protected Status beneficiary; or
- is a refugee or asylum applicant.
Those with pending AOS applications will be considered to have abandoned their application to adjust status if they travel abroad without advance parole. They also may not be granted entry when traveling back in to the U.S. If this happens, applicants may not be able to adjust their status and will be required to go through consular processing outside the U.S. to get a Green Card.
To avoid such circumstances, AOS applicants have to apply for advance parole before they leave the U.S. This document will help them to reenter the U.S. after their trip without jeopardizing their status. This document will work like a visa to reenter the U.S. The advance parole document is referred to as Form I-512L, Authorization for Parole of an Alien into the United States.
How to apply for an Advance Parole Document?
The USCIS has designated Form I-131, Application for Travel Document, to apply for an advance parole document. This form will have to be accompanied by the required fee and supporting documents. Applicants must be sure to file the current edition of the form dated 12/23/16. USCIS will not accept previous versions of the form.
Applicants must remember, they cannot travel abroad and then apply for this document. They’ll first need to apply for and receive this document before traveling abroad.
Form I-131 Filing Fee for Advance Parole
The filing fee form Form I-131 is $575 as of the date of publication.
USCIS will issue a combo card to those applying for advance parole and for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) at the same time. Applicants whose I-485 applications are pending can use the same card to find employment in the U.S. and to travel abroad and reenter the U.S. This document will help them prove that they have applied to adjust their status.
Once their adjustment of status applications is approved and they are granted Green Cards, they can use their Green Cards to travel abroad and to find employment in the U.S. In most cases, permanent residents are not required to apply for travel documents to travel abroad, but they may need to get a reentry permit if they wish to stay abroad for more than six months but less than two years.
Advance parole documents are generally valid for a year from the date of issuance. Multiple and single use advance parole documents are issued by the USCIS. Depending on the immigration status of the applicant, USCIS will issue these documents.
Do I Need Advance Parole to Travel to a U.S. Territory?
You may not be required to obtain an advance parole document to travel to one of the U.S. territories like Guam, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Swains Island and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI). However, you must not enter a foreign port when you travel to one of these territories. To travel without an advance parole document to a U.S. territory, you will need to make sure that the trip is direct. You can confirm that by contacting your transportation carrier.
Remember, holding an advance parole document does not mean that you will be granted entry into the U.S. You will be subject to inspection by the Customs and Border Protection officials at the port of entry. You will be granted entry into the country if you are found to be admissible.