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[Jeannie Joung, Immigration Lawyer, 엘에이 이민법 변호사] Can I Travel While Waiting for the Green Card?

Apparently, with Trump in the White House, travel has become a hazardous activity. There was a controversial executive order banning travel for certain individuals from seven countries, Iraq, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen. Fortunately, the wisdom of the courts blocked this haphazard order and for now, the travel ban has been lifted. But we hear that Trump administration is cooking up a new version of the travel ban to appease the paranoia of the Trump goonies.

With travel becoming an extreme sport, a lot of our clients have been asking whether they can still travel while waiting for the green card. The simple answer is, yes.

Before you decide to travel while you are waiting for the green card, however, you absolutely MUST obtain a travel document or an advance parole. Think of an advance parole as an international travel permit for people without an immigrant status or a valid visa. Without an advance parole, you will be denied entry back into the U.S.

For marriage based immigration cases, you can apply for the advance parole at the same time you submit your entire green card petition package. In your marriage-based immigration case, you would include the Petition (I-130), Application for Adjustment of Status (I-485), Application for Employment Authorization (I-765), and Application for Travel Document/Advance Parole (I-131). Please click here for a complete list of forms for your marriage-based immigration case.

So, how do you apply for Travel Document?

1. You need two (2) U.S. passport size photos;

2. You need to submit concurrently with the I-485 Application or show that your I-485 Application has already been submitted such as the Receipt Notice;

3. You need to explain or submit evidence showing how you qualify for advance parole (usually the I-485 Receipt Notice or concurrent submission with your initial package is sufficient);

4. Depending on the case, you may or may not need to submit the filing fee.

With or without Trump's travel ban, traveling overseas while your immigration or any nonimmigration case is pending can have dire consequences. In worst case scenario, you can be denied entry into the U.S. and sent back to your home country at the airport. For this reason, we can't emphasize enough how important it is for you to consult with an experienced immigration attorney. The time for legal consultation has become more important now than ever.

Call today to schedule a free legal consultation with one of our experienced immigration attorneys!

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