TN Visa Workers / Adjustment Applicants Traveling with Advance Parole
Question: I am a Canadian citizen currently on TN visa status. I recently filed for an adjustment of status application for a green card based on marriage to a U.S. citizen.
I received my combination EAD and Advance Parole card yesterday. I read that I have to apply for advance parole every time I cross the border. Hence the border officers can reject my entry at a whim. I know agents can be moody and have heard horror stories since the agent basically acts like a judge and jury.
If I cross with the card, what other documentation do I need? Can I just bring my new passport, and not show the TN I-94 card?
Reply: TN visa workers with pending Adjustment of Status (AOS) applications can only depart and re-enter the U.S. if they have obtained Advanced Parole. Otherwise, their AOS application will be deemed abandoned.
Advanced Parole (AP) authorization may now be issued jointly with an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). When seeking re-entry to the U.S., TN visa workers should present their AP/EAD combo card. Normally, the AP/EAD card and passport should be sufficient for re-entry. CBP will likely remove any TN I-94 card and re-issue an Advance Parole endorsed I-94. It may also be helpful to have the original or copy of any I-797 receipt notice for the AOS filing. Individuals should be prepared to explain the reason for their travel (e.g. business or personal). In most cases, supporting documentation may not be required, but can be helpful.
Individuals with Advance Parole documents can still be denied admission to the U.S. e.g. if the basis of the trip was inconsistent with the AP application, or if the individual is inadmissible to the U.S. Individuals who have accumulated certain periods of unlawful presence should not use Advance Parole. The penalties for unlawful presence are only triggered upon departure from the U.S. If an individual in this situation departs the U.S. pursuant to Advance Parole, he/she will be subject to the unlawful presence 3/10 year bar, and may be prevented from adjusting status. See, e.g. Cheruku v. U.S. (3rd Cir. 2011).