Washington, D.C., Asylum Lawyer

Individuals and families who come to the United Sates are often unable to return to their home country because of fear of persecution in their home countries. Asylum is a form of protection for individuals in the United States who fear persecution in their home country. Persecution is severe harm, including physical mistreatment, detention, and serious threats. In order for an individual to be eligible for asylum, the persecution feared must be from the government, or persons or organizations that the government is unable or unwilling to control. Additionally, the individual must be targeted for persecution because of his or her race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group. It is important to note, however, that certain activities may make a person ineligible for asylum, including certain criminal convictions and terrorism-related activities, among others.

Generally, individuals must apply for asylum within one year of arriving in the United States. There are, however, recognized exceptions to this rule, such as changed conditions in the individual’s home country or extraordinary circumstances that prevented the individual from applying for asylum earlier. If an individual is granted asylum, he or she may apply for permanent residence after one year, and eventually apply for U.S. citizenship. Spouses and children under age 21 can also derive asylum status from the principal applicant if they are included on the application.

Asylum as a Removal Defense Strategy

Individuals who have been charged with removability and are in immigration court may seek the relief of asylum if they can show that they have a reasonable fear of persecution if they return to their home country. If they have been in the United States for more than one year and do not meet the eligibility for asylum, they may seek withholding of removal upon meeting a higher burden – that they face a probability rather than a reasonably possibility of persecution. Individuals who fear torture in their home countries may seek protection and relief from removal under the United Nations Convention Against Torture. Withholding of removal and/or relief under the Torture Convention does not result in eligibility for permanent residence as does asylum. The recipients of these forms of relief may live and work in the United States.

Obtaining asylum status either before USCIS or in court requires significant documentation and investigation into the applicant’s background. It is not an automatic approval based on claims of danger to life or freedom if removed to the country of origin. If you fear persecution in your home country nt, talk to an attorney at Cecil C. Harrigan, PC. We are experienced U.S. immigration with extensive experience in affirmative and defensive asylum applications and a commitment to helping our clients through this difficult process.

Maryland Refugee Attorney · Immigration Asylum Lawyers

We offer many packages of services on a flat fee basis, so you will know the cost of the service and how much each additional service will cost.

Our lawyers represent clients in Washington, D.C., and surrounding communities in Virginia and Maryland. Call us at 202-387-8866 or contact us by e-mail to arrange an initial consultation with an experienced Washington, D.C., asylum attorney. If you hire us for a package of immigration legal services, the $200 initial consultation fee will be credited to your retainer.