Asylum Basics

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What is withholding of removal?

Withholding of Removal protects an alien from return to a home country that threatens her life or freedom. This protection from deportation is guaranteed by Article 3 of the Refugee Convention and implemented by Sections 243(h) and 241(b)(3) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. Under these laws, Immigration Judges must allow aliens to invoke claims for withholding of removal at any time during deportation proceedings and seek review of the judge's decision by the Board of Immigration Appeals.

Withholding of Removal protects an alien from return to a ho...

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What is asylum?

Asylum is the legal protection afforded by the United States government to a person who can demonstrate a well-founded fear of persecution based on race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group. The opportunity to apply for asylum is offered to both refugees outside the United States and people who have entered the country illegally.

Asylum is the legal protection afforded by the United States...

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Can You Be Deported While Waiting for a Decision From the BIA?

Generally speaking, you cannot be deported while waiting for a decision from the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA). However, the filing of an appeal with the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) only “stays removal” under limited circumstances. Sometimes, an additional, written request to the BIA for stay of removal is required.

Generally speaking, you cannot be deported while waiting for...

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Can an Asylum Applicant Work in the United States?

Asylum applicants cannot apply for work permits at the same time as filing their asylum applications. Rather, they must wait 150 days from the date they filed their properly completed original asylum applications. The emphasis in on completed. If you are still in the process of adding supporting documents to your application, it is not considered completed, and you may not request authorization to work while your asylum application is pending.

Asylum applicants cannot apply for work permits at the same ...

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Can You Travel Outside the U.S. While Your Asylum Application Is Pending?

While you are waiting approval for asylum, you can leave the United States. However it is not generally a good idea. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will make the decision on whether or not to approve your request for asylum. If you leave while that application is pending, immigration laws allow the USCIS to presume that you have abandoned your asylum application. Presumptions mean that they are allowed to guess at your reasons for leaving without having any evidence of why you left the United States.

While you are waiting approval for asylum, you can leave the...

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Are There Quotas on How Many People Can Apply for Asylum in the U.S.?

There are no quotas on the number of people who can apply and receive asylum status within the United States. Similarly, there are no quotas by country for asylum applicants. Despite the lack of a cap or quota for asylum applicants, you should not delay in submitting your application, for several reasons.

There are no quotas on the number of people who can apply an...

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The Difference Between Asylum Status and Refugee Status

Asylum and refugee status are terms often used interchangeably in immigration law, but for those applying for asylum or refugee status, the distinction is crucial. The difference turns on where the person is located when making the application.

Asylum and refugee status are terms often used interchangeab...

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What is temporary protected status (TPS)?

Temporary protected status (TPS) is an immigration status for foreign nationals residing in the United States whose home countries are temporarily unsafe or overly dangerous. Situations that can make a country unsafe and lead to temporary protected status include wars, political turmoil, and earthquakes, floods, or other natural disasters.

Temporary protected status (TPS) is an immigration status fo...

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