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Can I leave the country after my interview but before I get my greencard?

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This is my situation:

Right now I have Advance Parole so I can leave the country if I want to. I was planning to use AP to go to my friend's wedding in May.

But I have just been informed that I will have my green card interview 15 days before my friend's wedding.

If I get approved, I know that I have to wait a while in order to receive my green card.

But what if I don't my green card by the time I have to go to my friend's wedding?

:wacko:

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If you are approved during the interview, your passport will be stamped for temporary I-551 for traveling.

Maybe, maybe not. You can ask for it and see what happens. My wife was told she was approved and the card arrived two days latter. Assuming you are told you are approved at the interview, the GC will arrive very quickly. If you are told that they must check a few things and a desicion will be made later, then the GC will take a bit longer. My wife did not receive a stamp in her passport, but she was not traveling so it was not an issue. The IO officer may take you AP/EAD card at the time of the interview too. Ours did not. If you still have your AP/EAD card you can travel and when you re-enter the US the CBP may ask why you didn't use your GC.

Good luck,

Dave

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From what I have read on VJ, your AP/EAD gets invalidated as soon as your GC is approved. Assume you leave the country and while away, your GC is approved but you do not have it on you. That means, your AP will be invalid at POE and would cause you major problems. That's just me theorizing. Experienced members may know better.

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Thanks for the additional insight... yikes so I have to hope that I get someone who has the authority to approve me at the interview? I've read that the reason they don't approve on the spot is because they don't have the authority to approve it on the spot. Is that true?

What are the % breakdowns like, between those who get approved on the spot and those who don't?

And just in case I don't get approved on the spot, what are the chances that I'll get my gc within 2 weeks of the interview?

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There are varying opinions on this, and the general consensus seems to be that once GC is aproved, technically the EAD/AP card becomes invalid. While this might be true, in practice CBP will let you use it to re-enter the US, even if the GC was issued while the petitioner was abroad.

My interview was on July 20, 2011. I wasn't approved on the spot, and had to leave the US the following day because of our wedding which was taking place in Finland in a week. I left on July 21, 2011. Two days later I received an approval email, and once I got my GC I actually noticed that the "issued on" date on my GC is the date of my original interview, 20th of July. I returned to the US early August with my AP, while my GC was waiting in our apt in Brooklyn. At POE this wasn't an issue at all, they can see that the GC has been issued, but because I did not have the physical card on me, they paroled me in with the AP. the Officer told me that as long as I traveled internationally within the next 12 months, I wouldn't have to take any action and just had to make sure to use my GC to re-enter the next time I traveled so that my status in their system would update from a "parolee" to "permanent resident". If I wasn't going to travel, he said I could just come to JFK back to POE and have them manually change my status. He also told me this happens all the time, and people get their GCs issued while they are abroad and use the AP to re-enter on a daily basis. It is of course important to note that this is one experience based on the protocols of one POE, but according to my experience and the information I was given by the officer at POE, using the AP to re-enter when a GC has been issued while the petitioner was abroad is really not very rare, nor that big of a thing.

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Thank you so much for sharing your experience in such helpful detail! I wonder if I should ask the interview officer about it at the end of the interview? I mean, as long as things are going well?

There are varying opinions on this, and the general consensus seems to be that once GC is aproved, technically the EAD/AP card becomes invalid. While this might be true, in practice CBP will let you use it to re-enter the US, even if the GC was issued while the petitioner was abroad.

My interview was on July 20, 2011. I wasn't approved on the spot, and had to leave the US the following day because of our wedding which was taking place in Finland in a week. I left on July 21, 2011. Two days later I received an approval email, and once I got my GC I actually noticed that the "issued on" date on my GC is the date of my original interview, 20th of July. I returned to the US early August with my AP, while my GC was waiting in our apt in Brooklyn. At POE this wasn't an issue at all, they can see that the GC has been issued, but because I did not have the physical card on me, they paroled me in with the AP. the Officer told me that as long as I traveled internationally within the next 12 months, I wouldn't have to take any action and just had to make sure to use my GC to re-enter the next time I traveled so that my status in their system would update from a "parolee" to "permanent resident". If I wasn't going to travel, he said I could just come to JFK back to POE and have them manually change my status. He also told me this happens all the time, and people get their GCs issued while they are abroad and use the AP to re-enter on a daily basis. It is of course important to note that this is one experience based on the protocols of one POE, but according to my experience and the information I was given by the officer at POE, using the AP to re-enter when a GC has been issued while the petitioner was abroad is really not very rare, nor that big of a thing.

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Just to follow-up --had my interview yesterday and although I was not granted a GC on the spot, she said that she would recommend that we get approved. I think it was one of those cases where the IO does not have the authority to approve a GC. Anyway, I asked her about traveling to Canada before obtaining my GC and she said it was fine as long as I have my EAD/AP combo card. She also wrote something in my passport about my AOS pending, and signed it with her name and other info. Thanks everyone for your good advice!

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My wife has a similar situation-does anyone know about this kind of case?

We went to the marriage-based AOS interview expecting the approval and she had a plane ticket to leave to see her family the day of the interview. At the interview, the IO approved the petition but said that other security checks hadn't gone through yet and that we would receive the final approval and the green card in the mail.

She left the day of the interview, thinking I could mail the green card to her when it comes and she would be able to use that to get back into the country. She had overstayed for over a year before applying the AOS and did not get an advanced parole prior to leaving. Does anyone know if she will have a problem reentering with the green card?

I'm really worried that there's a chance she won't be able to come back. Any insight here is greatly appreciated.

Thank you very much

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My wife has a similar situation-does anyone know about this kind of case?

We went to the marriage-based AOS interview expecting the approval and she had a plane ticket to leave to see her family the day of the interview. At the interview, the IO approved the petition but said that other security checks hadn't gone through yet and that we would receive the final approval and the green card in the mail.

She left the day of the interview, thinking I could mail the green card to her when it comes and she would be able to use that to get back into the country. She had overstayed for over a year before applying the AOS and did not get an advanced parole prior to leaving. Does anyone know if she will have a problem reentering with the green card?

I'm really worried that there's a chance she won't be able to come back. Any insight here is greatly appreciated.

Thank you very much

So your wife left the country with no way to get back in? I'm sorry, I really try to refrain from lecturing or being overly negative on this site, but did that really seem like a good idea? Sometimes I'm just stunned at the chances people take.

I hope, for your sake, that the greencard is approved quickly and you're able to mail it to her. It will probably work, provided there's nothing illegal about mailing a greencard.

You know, sometimes people wait months for their actual greencard to arrive. Things go wrong with the mail, processing gets hung up somewhere, etc. More often than not, the approval will come quickly and so will the card. I hope that's what happens in your case, I really do. But wow, probably not a great idea to leave without anything that gives her a legal way back in.

Good luck.

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I will second that truly terrible decision to leave the US without either a green card or AP in your hands. To reiterate - you should never, ever, under any circumstances leave the US without either AP or some form of your green card (actual card, I-551 stamp, etc.)

Hopefully the green card shows up sooner rather then later because she now cannot enter the US without it. You had better hope there are no mistakes on it or it doesn't get lost in the mail (which can lead to months of waiting for a new one).

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My wife has a similar situation-does anyone know about this kind of case?

We went to the marriage-based AOS interview expecting the approval and she had a plane ticket to leave to see her family the day of the interview. At the interview, the IO approved the petition but said that other security checks hadn't gone through yet and that we would receive the final approval and the green card in the mail.

She left the day of the interview, thinking I could mail the green card to her when it comes and she would be able to use that to get back into the country. She had overstayed for over a year before applying the AOS and did not get an advanced parole prior to leaving. Does anyone know if she will have a problem reentering with the green card?

I'm really worried that there's a chance she won't be able to come back. Any insight here is greatly appreciated.

Thank you very much

Technically, she abandoned the adjustment of status process, in toto, by leaving without AP in hand or I-551 stamp in the passport.

IF the greencard comes in the mail, then you got extremely lucky.

if she adjusted from a K-1, that overstay can be forgiven.

if she adjusted from tourist, student, or work visa - then things are scrutinized more.

Actions have consequences - her leaving technically abandons the adjustment of status process.

Edited by Darnell

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Another important factor, one should not leave US if he/she overstayed the visa for 6 months or 1 year.

In that case, you won't be able to enter even if you have AP.

So, thats why people here (mostly) suggest to not to leave US before getting GC in hands.

If possible, one should wait for another couple of weeks. The risk is not worth it :no:

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