Humanitarian parole is a final option for an applicant to enter the United States who is otherwise ineligible for a visa. USCIS has discretion to parole an individual into the United States temporarily on a case-by-case basis for urgent humanitarian reasons or significant public benefit (such as to obtain medical treatment not available in his/her country, visit a dying relative, or reunify young children with relatives). It is important to remember that Humanitarian Parole is an extraordinary measure, to be used sparingly, and may not be used to circumvent normal visa-issuing procedures. Parole does not grant any immigration benefits, but may allow an applicant to receive employment authorization.
Humanitarian parole may only be requested for persons who are outside the United States and who cannot obtain the necessary admission documents from the Department of State. Anyone can file an application for humanitarian parole: including the prospective parolee, a sponsoring relative, or an attorney on behalf of the applicant.
Time Frame of Application Process:
USCIS will generally make a decision on a request for humanitarian parole within 90 to 120 business days from the time USCIS receives the application. Urgent cases, such as those related to medical treatment, may be processed within days when necessary. While in the past, the application process occurred at the U.S. Embassy abroad, all such applications are now adjudicated at USCIS offices in Washington D.C. Parole Document issuance, however, occurs at the consular post in the applicant’s country of residence.
Duration of Humanitarian Parole:
Parole is only authorized for a specific period of time, typically for the duration of the urgent situation but no longer than one year. Parolees must depart the United States before the expiration of their parole. However, an applicant may request an extension of parole.
Those who are considering humanitarian parole should seek experienced immigration counsel. These cases can be complicated and can require the submission of considerable evidence documenting the emergency or humanitarian situation in order to maximize the chances of its approval.