Parole, under U.S. immigration law, gives the Department of Homeland Security authority to let someone into the United States temporarily. You can be ‘paroled’ into the United States at a port of entry or from within the interior.

What is Parole?

Parole is used when someone may be (or is) inadmissible or otherwise has no legal basis for being in the United States, but DHS would like to let them enter anyways. Parole is a term of art- it is used when DHS does not, or cannot, formally ‘admit’ someone. When someone is paroled into the United States, there is typically a reason for the parole and also a time limit to their stay.

What Entities Can Grant Parole?

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) may issue parole.

Common Types of Parole:

  • Humanitarian Parole: According to USCIS, “Humanitarian Parole is an extraordinary measure sparingly used to bring an otherwise inadmissible alien into the United States for a temporary period of time due to a compelling emergency.” Individuals may apply for humanitarian parole for themselves or any other person. Typical reasons for humanitarian parole include medical, familial, court proceedings, and other emergencies. Humanitarian parole can only be requested for people who are outside of the United States.
  • Advance Parole: Advance Parole is for people who are present in the United States but who wish to leave and return. You would file for advance parole in situations where you’d otherwise be inadmissible upon your return. Common scenarios include when you have a pending adjustment of status application or if you have TPS and you’d like to travel abroad. The issuance of an advance parole document by USCIS does not guarantee re-entry into the United States. Customs and Border Protection evaluates every case and makes the ultimate determination as to whether they will parole an individual into the U.S. It is imperative that you speak with an immigration attorney before applying for and departing the country on advance parole.
  • Parole in Place (PIP): Parole in Place is a program for the spouse (or widow), parent, son, or daughter of a current or former member of the U.S. military. To qualify for PIP, you must have entered unlawfully (without a visa) and remain in the United States. PIP may be granted in one-year increments.

Not-So-Common Types of Parole:

  • S-Visa: The S-visa is a form of parole. The petitioner for the S visa is a law enforcement entity. It’s issued to people who possess reliable information and who are assisting in the investigation of a crime. This visa is most commonly seen in the context of a U-visa where the victim is assisting a federal entity.

How to File for Parole?

Applications for Parole are filed on Form I-131, and you should consult an experienced immigration attorney to discuss your facts, prior to filing.

Why is Parole Important?

Parole is important because, in order to qualify for adjustment of status, the Immigration and Nationality Act states that an applicant must have been ‘admitted or paroled’ into the United States. So even if you entered unlawfully and are later paroled, you’d potentially qualify for adjustment of status from within the U.S.

If you would like information about parole, please contact an immigration attorney who is trustworthy and knowledgeable! Our attorneys at Landerholm Immigration, APC, are experienced in parole-immigration cases. Please feel free to call us at (510) 491-0291 to see how we can help!