Many people aren’t just coming to America to enjoy its opportunities; they are also trying to leave a place which is dangerous to them for some reason. Being eligible for asylum can help you to move up the line and have your immigration application granted faster, as your needs are more immediate. The most important question you will be asking here is: “Do I qualify for asylum?”
Who Is Eligible for Asylum?
In order to qualify for asylum, you must be able to prove that you have already suffered persecution or that you have a reasonable fear that you will be persecuted based on one or more of five specific grounds:
- Membership in a specific social group
- Political opinions
There must also be reason to believe that this persecution will continue, and asylum will not be granted for those who have suffered a one-time occurrence that they don’t expect to be repeated.
You may not be eligible for asylum if you have certain convictions on your record, so it is best to explain everything when you meet with your attorney. Even if you have a conviction that might keep you from getting relief, you may be eligible for some sort of Postconviction Relief measure that will change your criminal record. Mecklenburg Immigration Lawyer Morenike Omole can help you decide if you need to do something about your record.
Filling Out Your Application
Although there may be some exceptions granted, normally your application for asylum must be filled out within one year of your last entry into the United States. If your application is granted, you will be allowed to apply for a green card a year after being granted asylum.
Your application must provide extensive documentation to prove the allegations alleged in the petition. You must give good reasons to support the claim of persecution. A normal application wil contain a written statement from you explaining all the circumstances. You need to tell why you left your home country and why you are afraid to return, including details about how the conditions apply to you. You also need to attach independent reports describing the conditions in the country and any other evidence you have about the conditions there.
Happily, you can add your spouse and children to your application, either at the time you initially file it or at any time up until your petition is granted. The children must be under 21 and not married at the time, though. Unlike many other immigration applications, this one is free to file.
The Asylum Process
After you fill out the application, you will be required to attend an interview where you go over the statements you made in your petition. The interviewer will see if you are being truthful and if your claim is a valid one.
If you do not meet the qualifications for asylum, you could be deported and denied another chance to try again. Even if you do not feel comfortable doing so, tell your attorney everything that might be important. Any information you share will be kept confidential.
If you may be eligible for asylum, start securing your future in America today. Call Omole Law Office for a free consultation and evaluation of your immigration options.