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Immigration Asylum Lawyer

Are you a refugee facing persecution in your country?

If you are a refugee to the United States and have either faced past persecution or will face future persecution in your country, there is a good probability that you may qualify for political asylum. Being granted asylum requires a large amount of evidence in your favor, and it is often a complex and difficult process. Navigate the process with help of an experienced immigration attorney to maximize your chances of success. If you are unable or unwilling to return to your home country based on events or circumstances there, we are ready to guide you through the asylum process and fight for the outcome you need.

To apply for political asylum, you must show evidence of persecution or fear of persecution based on one of these grounds:

  • Race
  • Religion
  • National origin
  • Membership in a certain social group
  • Political opinion

How to Apply for Asylum in the United States

The process of applying for asylum can vary, depending on the unique circumstances of your case. It is possible to receive political asylum if you are already physically present in the U.S. or are arriving at a point of entry. If you are planning to apply for asylum after entering the U.S., it is critical to remember that you will only have 1 year from the date you arrived in the country to submit your application. Even if you have entered the U.S. illegally, you may still be eligible to apply for asylum.

There may be exceptions to this statute of limitations however, which can include extraordinary circumstances or that your circumstances have changed. If you find that you need to apply for asylum after the deadline, our Garden City immigration attorneys can help you argue your case.

To apply for asylum, you will need to submit an application and evidence to support your claims. Your application packet will include:

  • Immigration Form 1-589, Application for Asylum and for Withholding of Removal
  • A detailed affidavit of your reasons for seeking asylum
  • Evidence to support your claims, such as media reports, police records, group membership documentation, and medical records
  • Documentation to confirm your claims about your home country’s condition, such as international media reports and human rights organization reports

Applying After Entry to the U.S.

If you have entered the country with a visa or illegally, you can apply for asylum from within the country. You will need to submit the above documents to the U.S. Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS). After your application has been processed, you will be scheduled for an interview at a USCIS Asylum center to discuss your application. It can take several years for your scheduled interview to occur. As of the start of 2016, the wait for an interview was more than 2 years.

When your interview occurs, you will be allowed to bring your immigration lawyer to support you. Your attorney can help you prepare for your interview and help you defend your claims. If you do not speak English, you are also responsible for bringing your own interpreter. The interview is the last step before the USCIS will make a decision on your case.

Applying During Entry to the U.S.

If you have a visa to allow you entry it is best to wait until after you have entered the U.S. to begin the asylum process. If you do not, however, you will need to apply at a point of entry. Inform the customs officials or border agents that you wish to apply for asylum and you fear persecution if you return to your home country.

From there you will be placed in a detention facility until you are sent to a “credible fear” hearing with a USCIS asylum officer. This should only take a day or two to schedule, and you will be given the chance to explain your fear of persecution. The officer cannot grant asylum, but they can determine if you have reasonable support for your claims and if you should see an immigration judge. If they decide against you, you will be deported, unless you ask to see an immigration judge.

If you are permitted to appear before an immigration judge, you can argue your case and convince them that you qualify for asylum. Your immigration lawyer can help you support your claims. If the judge determines you may have cause to believe you are in danger in your home country, you will be scheduled for an immigration hearing. If the judge determines that you are not eligible for asylum, you will be removed from the country without the opportunity to appeal your case.

Learn Your Eligibility During an Initial Case Review Today

If you are interested in applying for asylum, or would like to know if you are eligible, feel free to reach out to our firm. Our team can review your situation, discuss your options, and explore your next steps. We are compassionate towards your situation, and we always go the extra mile for our clients.

Give our Long Island office a call at (516) 806-4070 to learn more about the political asylum application process and how our helpful legal team can guide you through it!

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