Advance Parole is a term in the Immigration field that basically means, “permission to leave and return to the USA.” This travel document is important because a Thai fiancee cannot depart and reenter the US without obtaining this document before she leaves. Immigration officials will presume abandonment of US residence if someone leaves the US after entering on a K1 Visa. Thus, if your Thai fiancee enters the country on a K1 Visa and then leaves she will not be allowed back into the US on that K1 Visa. The whole process must be restarted from scratch.


The question of Advance Parole often arises when a Thai fianee wishes to return to Thailand while her application for Adjustment of Status is still pending. The problem is that the visa will be considered abandoned by USCIS as well as the application to adjust status so once again this leaves the Thai fiancee outside of the country with no visa to get back in. Advance Parole is crucial if your Thai fiancee wishes to leave the US no matter what stage of the process her Adjustment of Status petition is in. Once she has obtained Permanent Residence she can leave the country and return, but until then it is wise for your fiancée/wife to stay in the US.


A Thai spouse present in the United States on a K3 Visa is able to depart and reenter the US without an advance parole travel document because the K3 is a multiple entry visa.


How does Advance Parole becomes an issue for some American/Thai couples? The answer is simple: the Honeymoon. For those wishing to travel outside of the US the necessity of advance parole can either postpone or cancel a prospective honeymoon. This is better than the alternative: leaving the United States only to find out that your Thai fiancee, now wife, cannot reenter the US. Some people have asked me if they can take their Thai spouse to Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. Although both of these locales, along with Guam and a few other American possessions, are under US jurisdiction there is some legal question as to whether going to one of these places constitutes “leaving the country” for immigration purposes. I believe that going outside of the 50 US states when the adjustment of status is pending is an unwise decision. Puerto Rico is technically another country, although a country in a perpetual union with the US, and now anyone traveling between the US and Puerto Rico has to go through customs. As a result, it is prudent to simply avoid travel to Puerto Rico or the US Virgin Islands until such time as your Thai spouse’s Adjustment of Status is complete.

Thanks for Reading,

Benjamin W. Hart, Esq.

The information imparted herein is intended for informational use only and should not be used as a replacement for competent legal advice from a professional.

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