Humanitarian Parole FAQs

Figueroa-Contreras Law Group handles humanitarian parole matters for clients who would need this service.

A foreign national urgently needs to travel to the United States. She was previously and was denied. What are her options?

Depending on the facts of the foreign nationals case, he or she may have a number of options, one of which might be a humanitarian parole request.

What is Humanitarian Parole?

Humanitarian parole is permission given to a foreign national outside the United States to enter the U.S. based on an emergency that is significant and compelling.

Who decides humanitarian parole requests?

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)’ Office of International Operations’ Humanitarian Affairs Branch (USCIS-HAB) decides humanitarian parole requests made by, or on behalf of, persons located outside the United States.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) authorizes parole for law enforcement and intelligence reasons, as well as to allow for the release of foreign nationals from immigration custody.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has the authority to grant parole requests at ports of entry and pre-flight inspection facilities.

Humanitarian parole requests are not always granted. In fact, USCIS-HAB reports that only 25% of the requests made each year are granted.

Is there a way to expedite the decision on a humanitarian parole request?

The Humanitarian Affairs Branch of USCIS’ Office of International Operations (USCIS-HAB) expedites requests based on certain criteria, including life-threatening medical emergencies, cases involving minors under age 16,

What types of “emergencies” qualify for humanitarian parole?

While only about 25% of humanitarian parole requests made each year are granted,

Requests are most commonly made based on:

  • medical-related emergencies, such as where the foreign national needs to come to the United States for medical treatment for a severe medical condition, where such treatment is not available outside or to accompany a minor who requires such treatment.
  • urgent family reunification emergencies, such as where the foreign national is particularly vulnerable and has nobody to care for him or her in the foreign country, or where the foreign national wishes to come to the United States to care for a terminally ill relative who lives in the United States; and
  • emergencies involving minors, where the foreign national seeks to accompany a minor entering the United States for urgent medical or humanitarian reasons.

The above list is not exhaustive; other types of emergencies might also qualify for humanitarian parole. USCIS-HAB reports that it only grants about 25% of the humanitarian parole requests made each year.

In all cases, the goal is to convince the U.S. Government that your situation involves an emergency that is truly compelling, and that you warrant a favorable exercise of discretion.

I entered on humanitarian parole to receive medical treatment and am now present in the United States. Is there a way to extend my stay?

The law does not allow for extensions. Your parole ends on the date that your original authorized stay period on your parole expires or on the date that you depart the United States, if you depart before the expiration of your original authorized stay period.

USCIS-HAB can re-parole you via a subsequent humanitarian request.

I applied for humanitarian parole and was denied. Can I appeal?

The laws and regulations relating to humanitarian parole are complex.

I have prior convictions and

Persons with criminal backgrounds are often denied for humanitarian parole on discretionary grounds.

The Immigration and Criminal Defense attorneys at Figueroa-Contreras Law Group can help you.

Can I be authorized to work in humanitarian parole?

An attorney at Figueroa-Contreras Law Group can evaluate your case and determine whether you are a candidate for humanitarian parole. To schedule your initial case evaluation appointment with one of our attorneys.


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