Chapter 12 - Travel
The filing of an application for T nonimmigrant status does not grant the applicant permission to travel outside the United States. Departures from the United States while an application for T nonimmigrant status is pending could impact the applicant’s ability to establish eligibility for T nonimmigrant status. Additionally, an applicant’s departure from the United States while the application for T nonimmigrant status is pending could impact the applicant’s ability to return to the United States unless the applicant has another status that allows for travel.
A T nonimmigrant may travel outside the United States before applying for lawful permanent residence. The T nonimmigrant must file an Application for Travel Document (Form I-131), to obtain advance parole before departing the United States in order to return to the United States in T nonimmigrant status.
A T nonimmigrant who departs the United States and returns through means other than an advance parole document issued before departure or admission at a designated port of entry with a T nonimmigrant visa does not resume T nonimmigrant status and may have to reapply for such status if certain requirements are not met. In order for a T-2, T-3, T-4, T-5, or T-6 nonimmigrant to depart the United States and return to the United States in T nonimmigrant status, the T nonimmigrant must either:
File an Application for Travel Document (Form I-131), and obtain advance parole before departure; or
Apply for and receive a T nonimmigrant visa from the Department of State and seek admission as a T nonimmigrant at a designated port of entry.
Even if a person is granted an advance parole travel document before departing the United States, the document does not entitle the person to be paroled into the United States. U.S. Customs and Border Protection makes a separate, discretionary decision on a request for parole when the person arrives at a U.S. port of entry.
DHS may revoke or terminate an advance parole document at any time, including while the person is outside the United States. In that event, the person may be unable to return to the United States unless the person has a valid visa or other document that permits the person to travel to the United States and seek admission.
If the person is in the United States and DHS has granted deferred action in the case, the deferred action terminates automatically if the person leaves the United States without advance parole. Generally, if the person is in the United States and has applied for adjustment of status to that of a lawful permanent resident, USCIS deems the adjustment application abandoned if the person leaves the United States without advance parole.