USCIS Is Denying Pending Advance Parole Applications for Abandonment Due to International Travel

The American Immigration Lawyers Association reported that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has been denying Form I-131 advance parole applications for abandonment in instances where the applicant has traveled abroad while the applications were pending at USCIS. These applications are being denied even if the applicant has a separate valid advance parole document or a valid H, K, L, or V visa to return to the United States. In the denial notification, USCIS points to the Form I-131 instructions at page 6 where it states that “[i]f you depart the United States before the Advance Parole Document is issued, your application for an Advance Parole Document will be considered abandoned.” In the past, USCIS has approved advance parole applications for individuals who travel abroad during while their applications were pending as long as they traveled using a valid Advance Parole Document or a valid H, K, L, or V visa.

Adjustment of Status applicants that may need advance parole documents for travel in the future should consider avoiding international travel during the pendency of the advance parole application. In the alternative, applicants may wish to consider submitting a new Form I-131 application to USCIS if a pending application is denied.