Many people around the world have to flee their countries of birth due to being targeted because of their race, nationality, political opinion, or being a part of a particular group of people. If you are in the United States, you can apply for protection in the form of an application for affirmative asylum.
What is Affirmative Asylum?
Affirmative Asylum is a form of protection that allows you to remain in the United States instead of being removed and sent to a country of feared persecution. The affirmative asylum process is for persons who are inside the United States and are not yet in removal proceedings. An applicant can file for asylum either affirmatively or as a defense to removal proceedings.
Once you are in removal proceedings, the potential risk of applying affirmatively (being removed or deported) already exists.
How and when do I apply for Affirmative Asylum?
Applying for Affirmative Asylum
An application for Affirmative Asylum is done through USCIS Form I-589 along with the appropriate supporting documents.
US immigration law requires asylum seekers to apply for asylum within one year of arrival to the United States unless they can demonstrate extraordinary circumstances for the delay or changed circumstances that significantly affect their eligibility for asylum. Individuals who file late must explain the reason for the delay in filing and may be denied the opportunity to apply for asylum.
What happens after I file for Affirmative Asylum?
The Affirmative Asylum Process
When an applicant files for asylum, they generally file simultaneously for withholding of removal and for relief under the Convention against Torture. Withholding of removal and relief under the Convention against Torture can only be granted by an Immigration Judge.
After you have applied for asylum with the Asylum office, you are allowed to remain in the United States to await the outcome of your application. At some point, an interview will be scheduled and you will be allowed to present your case before an asylum officer who will determine whether or not asylum should be granted. After asylum is granted, asylees are eligible for adjustment of status one year after being granted asylum.
Do I need a lawyer for my Affirmative Asylum case?
Legal Assistance for Affirmative Asylum
Before you file your affirmative case, you should seek the advice of an immigration lawyer with specific experience in affirmative asylum cases. It is important to obtain legal assistance BEFORE you file for affirmative asylum.
We Can Help You with Affirmative Asylum
At Richards and Jurusik Immigration Law, we have assisted many clients from various countries with their asylum applications. We can help you understand the strengths and weaknesses of your case in order to help you make a decision about whether or not to apply for asylum.
Richards and Jurusik Immigration Law regularly creates video content about the current state of a certain aspect of US immigration law, and how it applies to Canadians living and working in the United States today.