Persecution and Asylum Attorney
Persecution and Asylum Attorney
Every year, the United States grants asylum to thousands of individuals who have been persecuted in their home countries. The process of applying for asylum can be complex, and it is important to have an experienced asylum attorney by your side.
If you have been persecuted in your home country and are seeking asylum in the United States, contact us today for a consultation with a Houston, Texas asylum attorney. We will review your case and help you understand your options, and then aggressively pursue the best possible outcome on your behalf.
Understanding the Asylum Process
There are two main ways to apply for asylum in the United States:
Affirmative AsylumAn affirmative asylum is a form of relief from persecution that allows an individual who is already in the United States to apply for asylum. Unlike defensive asylum, which is filed as a response to removal proceedings, affirmative asylum can be filed by anyone who meets the eligibility requirements, regardless of their current immigration status.To be eligible for affirmative asylum, an individual must:
- Be physically present in the United States
- Be able to demonstrate that they have a well-founded fear of persecution based on one of the five protected grounds: race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group.
- Pass a credible fear interview with an asylum officer
If the individual is able to meet this burden of proof, they will be granted asylum and allowed to remain in the United States.
While affirmative asylum provides a vital form of protection for many individuals fleeing persecution, it is important to note that the process can be difficult and often requires the assistance of an experienced immigration attorney.
Defensive AsylumDefensive asylum is a form of asylum sought by individuals who are already in the United States and are facing removal proceedings.
To be eligible for defensive asylum, an individual must:
- Be inside the United States
- Have already started removal proceedings or be facing imminent removal from the United States
- Show that they have a well-founded fear of persecution or torture if returned to their home country based on one of the five protected grounds: race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group
If an individual meets these requirements, they can apply for defensive asylum by filing a form with the Immigration Court.
Once an application for defensive asylum is filed, the individual will have a chance to present their case to an immigration judge.
If the judge finds that the individual has a well-founded fear of persecution or torture, they will grant asylum.
If the judge does not find that the individual has a well-founded fear, they will deny the application and the individual will be removed from the United States.
If granted, defensive asylum status allows the individual to remain in the United States and apply for a green card.
If an asylum application is denied, the individual will be removed from the United States.
However, there are some circumstances in which an individual may be able to appeal the denial of their asylum application.
If you have been denied asylum and are facing removal from the United States, it is important to contact an experienced immigration attorney immediately.
Your attorney will also help you fill out the necessary paperwork and file it with the USCIS. Once your petition has been approved, you will be able to move forward with your green card application.
An immigration attorney can also provide invaluable support and guidance throughout the entire process. If your self-petition is denied, your attorney can help you appeal the decision. And if you are granted a green card, your attorney can help you navigate the next steps in the process, such as applying for citizenship.
What an Immigration Attorney Can Do
The asylum process is often complex and difficult to navigate without the assistance of an experienced immigration attorney.
An immigration lawyer can:
- Help you understand the asylum process and eligibility requirements
- Assist you in gathering evidence to support your claim
- Prepare you for your interview with an asylum officer or immigration judge
- Represent you in court if your case goes to trial
Convention Against Torture
The Convention Against Torture is an international treaty that prohibits the United States from returning individuals to a country where they would face torture.
To be eligible for relief under the Convention Against Torture, an individual must:
- Show that it is more likely than not that they will be tortured if returned to their home country
- Show that the torture would be inflicted by or at the instigation of the government
If an individual is able to meet this burden of proof, they will be granted relief and allowed to remain in the United States.
While the Convention Against Torture provides a vital form of protection for many individuals, it is important to note that it does not provide a pathway to citizenship.
Withholding of Removal
Withholding of removal is a form of relief from removal. It is similar to asylum but has a higher burden of proof. An individual must show that it is more likely than not that he or she would be persecuted in his or her home country on account of race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group.
If the individual is granted withholding of removal, he or she will be allowed to stay in the United States and will not be removed to his or her home country. However, withholding of removal does not provide a path to citizenship. Instead, it provides protection from removal and allows the individual to remain in the United States indefinitely.
Talk to an Asylum and Persecution Attorney
You have one year to apply for asylum after you arrive in the United States or after your status expires. The earlier you start this complex process, the better.
We understand how much is at stake and will work tirelessly to help you navigate the asylum process and achieve the best possible outcome in your case.
To learn more about your rights and options, contact us today for a consultation with an experienced asylum and persecution attorney. We also represent clients in need of other forms of relief from removal, such as the Convention Against Torture and withholding of removal.