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The Complete Guide to Form I-512

Foreign nationals under the supervision of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) may be eligible to apply for advance parole. Doing so requires the use of Form I-512. In this article, we provide you with an overview of Form I-512.

Foreign nationals under the supervision of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) may be eligible to apply for advance parole. Doing so requires the use of Form I-512.

Below, we provide you with an overview of Form I-512, including what it is, who can file this form and how to apply for advance parole.

What is Form I-512? 

Form I-512 is a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) travel document. It allows foreign nationals who do not have a valid immigrant visa to re-enter the United States after traveling abroad.

Before leaving the United States, nonimmigrants are required to get approval for advance parole; if they fail to get approved for advance parole, they will not be allowed to reenter the country (unless they can prove that there is an exceptional circumstance).

Note that Form I-512 is not considered a visa or a re-entry permit. This document is only issued to nonimmigrants that do not have permanent residency status.

Who should apply for advance parole? 

If you are a foreign national, you should use Form I-512 to apply for advance parole if any of the following apply to you:

  • You applied for and were granted asylum

  • You have applied for asylum but the application is still being processed

  • You were granted Family Unity Program benefits

  • You have received a Temporary Protected Status

  • You have applied for an adjustment of status and that application is pending

  • You have an emergency that requires you to travel abroad for a temporary period 

The following are conditions for those not required to file for advanced parole:

  •  If you have a valid K-3 or K-4 visa, in addition to

  • an H-1 (Temporary Worker in a Specialty Occupation)

  • an L-1 (Intra-Company Transferee) visa

  • any dependents who have an H-4 or an L-2 status and who have filed for an adjustment of status and maintained the status

Who cannot apply for advance parole?

If you are a foreign national and any of the following apply to you, you cannot apply for advance parole: 

  • You are illegally in the United States (you do not have a valid immigration status)

  • You are an exchange alien and are subject to the foreign residence requirement

  • You are in the process of removal proceedings

  • You are the beneficiary of a private bill

How to apply for Form I-512? 

In order to apply for advance parole, you must first file Form I-131 (Application for Travel Document). You can obtain an Application for Travel Document by visiting the I-131 page of the USCIS website.

In addition to submitting Form I-131, you must also submit the necessary initial evidence and supporting documentation, provide an $85 fee for a biometrics services appointment and then a $575 filing fee.

Form I-131 should be filed and approved before you travel outside of the U.S. If you do not have a Form I-131 approval and you travel outside of the country, your application for advance parole may be denied or abandoned.

Once you have filed Form I-131, USCIS will review it. If it is approved, USCIS will issue you an I-512, which will be sent to one of the following locations:

  • The U.S. address that you provide in your application 

  • A U.S. Embassy or consulate (you must provide the city/town and country)

  • An overseas DHS office (you much provide the city/town and country)

Note that if you choose to have your advance parole document sent to a U.S. Embassy or consulate or an overseas DHS office, you must indicate how you would like to be notified that the document is ready to be picked up.

I-512 is an A4 document (equivalent to a standard sized piece of paper) that has the words “Authorization for Parole” printed at the top. 

What documentation should you provide?

When filing Form I-131 (Application for Travel) for advance parole purposes, you must also provide the necessary initial evidence. This evidence includes:

  • A copy of a photo identification document for the beneficiary, petitioner and sponsor

  • A copy of the identity page of the beneficiary’s passport

  • A statement that explains why the beneficiary is unable to obtain a U.S. visa (if necessary)

  • A description that explains the significant public benefit or urgent humanitarian reason for why you must exit the country (supported by documentation) and the amount of time that you will need parole

  • A copy of any decisions USCIS has made regarding immigrant or nonimmigrant applications or petitions that you have filed in the past

  • A statement that explains why the beneficiary is unable to obtain a waiver of inadmissibility (if necessary)

Important Form I-131 filing tips

Before you file Form I-131, take the time to ensure that you have filled out the entire document. All sections must be completed; if not, USCIS will reject your application. You must include the following information in your application:

Part 1: Information About You

  • Your family name

  • Your physical address

  • Your date of birth

  • Your country of birth

  • Your country of citizenship

  • Your Alien Registration Number (A-Number) (if applicable)

  • Class of admission 

  • Your gender

  • Your Social Security Number (if applicable)

Part 2: Application Type

  • Indicate which type of application you are filing Form I-131 for. Select box 1.d., 1.e or 1.f, depending on which option applies to you.

  • If you selected 1.f, you must also fill out the family name, date of birth and physical address of the person you are applying advance parole for

Part 3: Processing Information 

  • Date of your intended departure

  • The expected length of your trip (in days)

  • Whether or not you or any person included in your application is currently in deportation, exclusion, removal or rescission proceedings. If you select “yes,” you must provide the name of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) office.

  • Whether or not you have ever received a re-entry permit or a refugee travel document. If you select “yes,” you should indicate the date that the document was issued and the disposition.

Part 4: Information about your proposed travel

  • The purpose of your trip

  • Any countries that you plan on visiting 

Part 7: Qualifications for Advance Parole Document

  • For this part of Form I-131, you must describe why you are qualified for advance parole, as well as the reasons why you require an advance parole document. You must provide this information on a separate sheet of paper. 

  • You should indicate how many trips abroad you intend on using your advance parole document for (one trip or more than one trip).

Part 8: Signature of Applicant 

  • In this section, you must sign and date the application, as well as provide your daytime phone number. Only handwritten signatures will be accepted. Stamped or typewritten signatures will be rejected.

Part 9: Information about the preparer (if other than the applicant)

If anyone other than you completed the form, you must provide their information in this section, including:

  • Full name

  • Mailing address

  • Daytime phone number

  • Email address (if applicable)

USCIS provides the option to receive an e-notification upon receipt of Form I-131 and its necessary supporting documents and fees. If you would like to receive an e-notification, you can complete Form G-1145 (E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance) and attach it to the front of your travel document application.

Can an advance parole application be denied?

Yes, USCIS can deny applications for advance parole. Common reasons for denial include:

  • failure to complete the application properly

  • not providing the necessary documentation

  • not having a valid reason for traveling abroad

If your application is denied, USCIS will provide you with a written notification of denial. You will also receive details that highlight how you can file an appeal, which involves completing and filing Form I-290B.

You have 33 days from receiving a denial to file an appeal. You should send your appeal and the necessary fees to the same office where you filed your initial application 

Once the office receives your appeal, the document will be sent to the Administrative Appeals Unit, where it will be assessed. You will receive a written notification regarding the decision on your appeal.

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