U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced that it is now issuing employment and travel authorization on a single card for certain individuals who have pending employment or family based I-485 Applications to Adjust Status. An adjustment applicant may receive this combined card when he or she files an Application for Employment Authorization (EAD), Form I-765, and an Application for Travel Document (AP), Form I-131, concurrently with or after filing Form I-485. The card will also be issued to applicants who file for extensions of their EAD and AP documents concurrently, so long as their EAD and AP documents expire within 120 days of each other. As of July 2007, there is no longer a fee for either the Form I-765 or Form I-131 filed concurrently with, or in connection to, a pending Form I-485.
This new card replaces the previous practice of issuing a card for employment authorization and separate paper Advance Parole documents. The dual card looks similar to the current Employment Authorization Document (EAD) but includes text that reads, “Serves as I-512 Advance Parole.”
As with the current Advance Parole document, obtaining a combined Advance Parole and employment authorization card allows an applicant for adjustment of status to travel abroad and return to the U.S. without abandoning the pending adjustment application. Upon returning to the U.S., the individual who travels with the card must present the card to request parole through the port-of-entry. The decision to parole the individual is made at the port-of-entry. Advanced Parole does not cure inadmissibility due to unlawful presence accumulated under INA 212(a)(9)(B) or (C). Individuals who have been unlawfully present in the U.S. and subsequently depart and seek re-entry through a grant of parole may be inadmissible and ineligible to adjust their status. It’s therefore imperative that individuals who have accumulated certain periods of unlawful presence in the United States not travel until they have successfully adjusted status to permanent residence.
For more information about the EAD and Advance Parole card, visit www.uscis.gov.