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USCIS Now Denying Advanced Parole for Individuals Who Leave the U.S. While I-131 Application is Pending

August 2017

This information only applies to foreign nationals planning to leave and subsequently reenter the U.S. with an advanced parole document while his/her adjustment of status is pending.

This information does not apply to foreign nationals who plan to travel on a temporary visa (i.e. H-1B, L-1, E-2/E-3, F-1, J-1, O-1/O-2, R-1) and who do not have a pending adjustment of status.

 

Background:

“Advanced parole” is travel permission granted to a foreign national who is already in the U.S. and is in the process of applying for a green card.

In technical terms, Form I-131 Application for Travel Document is filed to obtain permission to enter and leave the U.S. while Form I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status is pending. Individuals are not allowed to leave the U.S. while their Form I-131 is pending. Prior to now, an individual could re-enter the U.S. on a previously-approved advanced parole.

(H, L, K, and V visa holders have certain other rights which should be discussed with their immigration attorney prior to leaving the U.S.)

 

What is currently happening:

Form I-131 (both initial applications and renewals) are now being denied in instances where foreign nationals leave the U.S. even when the foreign individual already has previously-approved advanced parole. USCIS seems to now be enforcing the limited-view statement of law stating that an applicant cannot leave the U.S. while his/her Form I-131 is pending.

Even foreign nationals with H, L, or K visas (with valid multiple entry stamps) may not leave the U.S. while their Form I-131 is pending. If s/he leaves the U.S. while waiting for an application for advanced parole, the application for advanced parole is now considered to be abandoned and subsequently denied. This results in the foreign individual having to enter the U.S. on his/her valid H, L, or K visa.

 

What to do now:

It is now advisable for individuals who are filing Form I-131 while waiting for adjustment of status to NOT travel outside of the U.S. until the Form I-131 is approved (even if the foreign national already has a previously-approved Form I-131). Based upon current USCIS adjudication time, Form I-131 processing takes approximately 4 months. It is advisable to not leave the U.S. during such adjudication time.

You should contact the experienced immigration attorneys at David Hirson & Partners, LLP with questions or concerns regarding your advanced parole or adjustment of status.

Tel: (949) 383-5358                          Email: info@hirson.com                                www.Hirson.com