Lack of human rights is one of the main reasons why people leave their countries for the United States. The U.S. immigration laws provide protection to those who have suffered persecution or who fear that they will suffer persecution in the future on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.

Eligibility to apply for asylum is not dependent on immigration status. Even a person unlawfully present in the United States may apply for asylum. However, there are bars to being granted asylum. For example, individuals who pose a danger to the security of the United States, have been firmly resettled in another country prior to arriving in the United States, or have participated in the persecution of any person on account of the five enumerated grounds listed above are ineligible for asylum status.

An application for asylum must be submitted within one year of last arrival into the United States. Sufficient documentation of changed circumstances or extraordinary circumstances related to the delay in filing can excuse the one year deadline.

An asylum applicant may apply for employment authorization if 150 days have passed since the filing of a complete asylum application (excluding any delays caused by the applicant such as requesting the rescheduling of an interview) and no decision has been made on the asylum application.

An individual who is granted asylum can apply for permanent resident status after one year of being physically present in the U.S. following the grant of asylum.

Our attorneys have successfully assisted clients from across the globe whose claims have been based on:

  • Political opinion/imputed political opinion
  • Religious beliefs/religious conversion
  • Female genital mutilation
  • Gang violence
  • Sexual orientation
  • Ethnicity and nationality

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