I 131 Advance Parole Travel Document Application2024-01-11T06:10:47+00:00

Travel Document Application Package

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  • Application for Travel Document Form I-131

  • Form G-1145, e-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance

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Complete Your Journey: Essential Steps for Filing Form I-131, Travel Document Application

Imagine the excitement of planning a trip abroad, only to realize that your immigration status might cause complications in your travel plans. That’s where Form I-131 comes in – a crucial application for non-citizens seeking travel documents. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the essentials of Form I-131, from understanding the different types of travel documents to navigating the application process. By the end of this article, you’ll be well-equipped to complete your journey confidently and without any immigration-related hurdles.

Key Takeaways

  • Form I-131 is a travel document for non-US citizens to travel abroad and return.
  • Advance Parole, Reentry Permits, and Refugee Travel Documents are necessary forms of documentation depending on immigration status.
  • Filing Form I-131 requires compiling documents, paying fees, submitting the application package with USCIS instructions in mind. Legal advice may be needed when filing complex applications.

Decoding Form I-131: Your Passport for International Travel as a Non-Citizen

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Non-US citizens needing to travel abroad and subsequently return to the US must file Form I-131, known as the Application for Travel Document. This form enables applicants to secure travel documents such as Advance Parole, Reentry Permits, and Refugee Travel Documents.

The filing fee for Form I-131 is $575, and payment can be made via a money order, personal check, cashier’s check, or credit card.

Understanding Advance Parole

Advance Parole serves as a travel permit for non-citizens with ongoing green card applications or select immigration statuses, allowing them to travel abroad without disrupting their application process. However, it’s important to note that an Advance Parole document does not guarantee admission into the United States, and it is different from humanitarian parole.

If the document expires while the holder is abroad, difficulties in returning to the US may arise.

Navigating Through Reentry Permits

A Reentry Permit is a document that allows lawful permanent residents (green card holders), also known as lawful permanent resident, to travel outside of the United States for a specified duration without relinquishing their permanent residence status. It’s advisable to apply for a re entry permit, which is a type of travel document, even if there are no specific travel plans, as there are no drawbacks to doing so.

However, if an individual has been present in the US without legal immigration status and subsequently leaves the country, they may face a bar from re-entering the US for either three or ten years, depending on the duration of their stay without legal status.

The Role of Refugee Travel Documents

A Refugee Travel Document is a type of travel document that provides those with asylum or refugee status the ability to return to the US after travelling outside the country. This documentation is a key part of helping individuals who have sought refuge maintain their stability and security. To apply for a Refugee Travel Document, one must file Form I-131 and be physically present in the United States at the time of application. The processing time for a Refugee Travel Document is approximately three months.

Travelling without a Refugee Travel Document may result in the inability to re-enter the US and potential removal proceedings.

Who Should Consider Filing Form I-131?

Form I-131 eligibility depends on the applicant’s immigration status and the type of travel document required. Individuals with pending applications for adjustment of status, asylum, or temporary protected status (TPS) may be eligible for Advance Parole. Asylees, refugees, and permanent residents who obtained their status as a refugee or asylee may request a Refugee Travel Document. To understand the specific eligibility criteria for each type of travel document, it’s essential to consult the official instructions and regulations provided by the U.S. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is a government agency of the U.S. federal government. It is responsible for adjudication services related to immigration.

Eligibility Criteria for Advance Parole Applicants

The eligibility for Advance Parole is determined on a case-by-case basis, with specific criteria for green card applicants. Certain circumstances, such as a pending adjustment application or a criminal record, can disqualify an individual from applying for Advance Parole.

Applicants for adjustment of status are required to travel and attend their green card interview within the US.

Special Considerations for Refugees and Asylees

Refugees and asylees must meet certain requirements to obtain a Refugee Travel Document. They must submit Form I-131, along with relevant documents, and apply while physically present in the United States.

Holding refugee or asylum status simplifies the application process for a Refugee Travel Document, enabling individuals to travel internationally and return to the United States.

Step-by-Step Guide to Completing Your Form I-131 Application

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Filing Form I-131 includes multiple steps such as accumulating the required documents, paying the applicable fees, and submitting the application. Reviewing the USCIS service center’s instructions is imperative to ensure accurate and comprehensive application completion. Failure to provide the required documentation or submitting an incorrect fee can result in the rejection of the application by USCIS.

Compiling the Necessary Documentation

To complete Form I-131, you will need the following documents:

  • A receipt notice from USCIS
  • Two passport-style photographs
  • A USCIS-issued document demonstrating the validity of your current immigration status
  • A photocopy of a government-issued identification document
  • Evidence that explains your reasons for traveling
  • Certified English translations if needed

Compiling and arranging the required documentation, including any pending form, in advance is key to a seamless application process.

Fee Payment Strategies

Form I-131 fees can be paid through various methods, including:

  • Money orders
  • Personal checks
  • Cashier’s checks
  • Credit cards

If you’re unable to afford the filing fee, you can apply for a fee waiver by filing Form I-912, demonstrating your inability to pay. Submitting the correct fee is vital to prevent application rejection by USCIS.

Submitting Your Form I-131 Application Package

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Once you’ve compiled the necessary documentation and prepared Form I-131, it’s time to submit your application package. Ensure that all documents are securely placed in the envelope to prevent any damage during transit. Label the envelope and the cover letter with the relevant mailing address and USCIS form number.

Where to Send Your Application

The correct mailing address for your Form I-131 application depends on your eligibility and residence. Consult the USCIS Lockbox Filing Locations Chart for Certain Family-Based Forms page for the appropriate address or visit the USCIS website for further details.

Tracking Your Receipt Notice and Application Progress

After submitting your Form I-131 application, USCIS will review it for completeness. Upon successful review, you’ll receive a receipt notice indicating the subsequent steps in the process, such as the date and time for your biometrics collection at the local USCIS Application Support Center. It’s important to monitor the receipt notice and adhere to any USCIS instructions.

You can track the status of your application online by entering the receipt number on the USCIS website.

Anticipating Processing Times and Planning Your Travel Accordingly

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Processing times for Form I-131 differ depending on the type of travel document requested. It can therefore take a variable length of time to process the form. Keep in mind that processing times can be affected by filing categories and immigration policies.

Verify the estimated processing times on the USCIS website to plan your travel judiciously.

Handling Urgent Travel Needs and Emergencies

In the event of an emergency or urgent travel need, you can request expedited processing of your Form I-131 application. Bring a completed I-131 form, two passport photos, and evidence to demonstrate the urgency of the need to travel to your local USCIS office.

Specific qualifying emergencies for expedited travel document requests include life-or-death emergencies, urgent humanitarian reasons, and family health issues.

Understanding the Limitations and Risks When Traveling with Form I-131 Documents

While Form I-131 documents facilitate international travel for non-citizens, understanding the associated limitations and risks is vital. An Advance Parole document can be revoked for any reason, and without it, you might not be able to return to the US without a valid US visa or other documentation.

Be aware of potential entry denials and bars from re-entry when traveling with Form I-131 documents.

Renewal and Extension of Travel Documents

Renewing and extending travel documents obtained through Form I-131 typically takes up to two years. To renew or extend your travel documents, follow these steps:

  1. Submit a completed Form I-131.
  2. Include evidence of your current immigration status.
  3. Provide a statement outlining the reason for renewal or extension.
  4. Include any other necessary supporting documentation.

Keep in mind that the validity of a Form I-131 travel document cannot be extended while abroad.

Legal Insights: When to Consult an Immigration Lawyer

In some cases, you may find it necessary to consult an immigration lawyer for assistance with your Form I-131 application. Situations where legal counsel might be advisable include notable delays in processing, issues with the application, or complex immigration history.

An immigration lawyer can offer useful advice and help ensure complete and accurate filing of your Form I-131 application.

Why Choose Citizen Concierge To Prepare Your Form I-131?

Choosing Citizen Concierge can save you an average of $350, offering a more affordable option than hiring an immigration lawyer. Their Travel Document Package includes:

  • Expert guidance
  • Personalized assistance
  • Timely updates
  • Streamlined documentation
  • Dedicated support throughout the Form I-131 application process.

Choose Citizen Concierge for USCIS success! Our money-back guarantee ensures forms I-131A acceptance, giving you peace of mind.


Navigating the Form I-131 application process can be complex, but with the right guidance and resources, you can obtain the travel documents you need to journey with confidence. By understanding the various types of travel documents, eligibility criteria, and potential risks, you’ll be well-prepared to complete your Form I-131 application and embark on your international adventure.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is form I-131 for?2023-11-29T09:14:54+00:00

Form I-131, also known as the ‘Application for Travel Document’, is used by USCIS to grant permission to individuals who need to leave the country for either personal or professional reasons. It is commonly used to obtain permanent residency or citizenship and also can be used to apply for a reentry permit, refugee travel document, TPS travel authorization document, or advance parole document.

How long does it take for I-131 to get approved?2023-11-29T09:46:48+00:00

It typically takes around 3 to 5 months for I-131 to get approved, but it can take longer. A Refugee Travel Document is valid for up to one year.

What evidence do you need for form 131?2023-11-29T09:51:54+00:00

To apply for Form 131, you must submit a copy of your I-551 Permanent Resident Card, two passport-style photographs, and evidence of your need to travel outside the US, such as proof of employment, education or family emergency. Additionally, include any documentary evidence that supports your reasons for leaving the US and a description of your activities while outside the country.

What is the filing fee for Form I-131?2023-11-29T09:53:38+00:00

The filing fee for Form I-131 is $575, so make sure you factor it into your budget before submitting the application.

How long does it take to renew or extend travel documents obtained through Form I-131?2023-11-29T09:55:18+00:00

It typically takes up to two years to renew or extend Form I-131 travel documents.

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