Refugee or Asylum Seekers Criteria for US

The US Immigration Policy on Asylum Seekers is a comprehensive report on the fundamentals of the US asylum policy. Individuals may seek asylum to the US if they are in fear of being persecuted because of their inclusion in a social group, nationality, political viewpoint, race, or religion. Other highlights of the US asylum policy guidelines can be found in this report.

Asylum Proceedings

The two methods for seeking asylum are an affirmative asylum proceeding and a defensive asylum proceeding. Aliens already in the US apply for asylum with the US Citizenship and Immigration Services through an affirmative asylum proceeding. This method entails a USCIS officer to review the application, the testimony of the alien, and the condition of the country the alien is seeking asylum from.

A defensive asylum proceeding is sought through the Executive Office for Immigration Review during a deportation proceeding. If an individual seeks asylum at a US port and expresses a fear of persecution, their application will be considered through the defensive asylum proceeding if he or she is deemed credible.

Aliens seeking asylum must begin apply within one year of their entry into the US unless there is a change of circumstances which can cause the time period to change. Approximately 1,000 asylum cases are allowed in the US per year.

Current policy dictates the distinction between credible fear of persecution and a well-rounded fear of persecution the alien may claim. Credible fear is a significant amount of fear demonstrated by the alien which can be substantiated.

Reasons to be barred from Asylum

Aliens can be barred from asylum because of the following reasons:

• The alien has resided in another country before arriving in the US;
• The alien had participated in any way in the persecution of another person;
• The alien had been convicted of a serious crime,
• The alien would pose a security threat; and
• The alien belongs to a terrorist organization or has engaged in terrorist activity.

Guest Author

Kenneth G. Wincorn, P.C
Dallas immigration attorney

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