Can I apply for Asylum?


Can I apply for Asylum?

New Jersey Immigration Lawyer Aneliya M. Angelova answers common questions regarding asylum.

Who may apply for asylum?

Anyone who has a well-founded fear of persecution based on

  • Race
  • Religion
  • Nationality
  • Membership in a particular social group; or
  • Political opinion.

How do I apply for asylum?

Generally, you need to submit form I-589 – Application for Asylum and for Withholding of Removal. Please note that you must submit supporting documents. I would highly recommend that you use the services of an immigration lawyer.

I am in removal proceedings. Can I apply for asylum?

Yes, you can.

What is the difference between affirmative asylum and defensive asylum?

Generally, defensive asylum is the process for asylum application when the immigrant is already in removal/deportation proceedings.

Affirmative asylum – the applicant may be legally or illegally in the United States but he/she is not in removal proceedings.

When can I file for asylum?

It is extremely important to understand the deadlines for filing of an asylum application. You must file your asylum application within 1 year after your arrival in the United States. The only two exceptions to the one year rules are:

  1. If you can show that there are changed circumstances that affect your eligibility for asylum; or
  2. You can prove there were extraordinary circumstances that prevented from filing within the first year of your arrival.

Can I apply for Work Authorization?

If your asylum application has been pending for 150 or more days, then you can apply for I-765 Work Authorization.

Do I need an immigration lawyer if I want to apply for asylum?

You are not required to have an immigration lawyer but I would recommend that you hire one.

My asylum application was granted. Can I get a green card?

Yes, you can.

My asylum application was granted. When do I file for my green card?

You can submit Form I-485 Application to Adjust Status or to Register Permanent Register Status one year after the approval of your asylum application.