Advance Parole and DACA

     With President Trump ending DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), advance parole is also ending. Those currently on DACA need to be aware of what this means for them. First, it is important to understand what Advance Parole is and why and how it is used. Second, DACA recipeients should be aware that there are always risks involved when travelling with advance parole.

 

     If someone is inadmissible, that means that if that person is outside the US and trying to enter, he/she will most likely be denied entry. Advance Parole is essentially a document indicating that the holder may reenter the US despite being inadmissible. That said, the border patrol official at the border is still given discretion on whether to allow a person to enter or not.

 

     If a DACA recipient were to leave the US, most would be inadmissible due to having been in the US without authorization. Advance Parole is relevant to DACA recipients because it gave them the ability to leave the US for education or humanitarian reasons and still be allowed back in the country despite being inadmissible. They simply had to apply for Advance Parole before leaving the US and present the document upon reentry. This allowed DACA recipients to engage in college study abroad or visit ailing relatives abroad.

 

     With this week's announcement, DACA recipients are no longer able to apply for advance parole to leave the country. More importantly, those who have a valid advance parole document, but who have not yet traveled, should be aware that there are some risks. The current administration has indicated that it will honor the stated validity of any advance parole. At the same time, it is in the discretion of each border official whether to allow someone to enter the country or not. Prior to this week's announcement to end DACA, the majority of DACA recipients traveling with advance parole were traveling and returning without incident.  Whether someone will be denied entry depends on many factors, and it is impossible to make a blanket statement. In sum, if you are on DACA and are considering traveling on advance parole, the best recommendation is to consult with an attorney first.