Pros and cons of political asylum in the United States
If you are in danger in your home country, or you feel a real fear of persecution in the future, then this is one of the reasons for seeking asylum from the government of the United States of America.
Only a few understand what this procedure is, and what difficulties they will have to face in the process of preparing documents, filing, examining a case and living in the United States before they make an approving decision. And even fewer people are aware of all the pros and cons of political asylum in the United States. Blogger PolitAdvice It proposes to examine in detail all aspects of political asylum and look at this opportunity to be legalized in the USA from a different point of view.
There are a lot of articles about asylum in the US, but only a few tell the whole truth to the end. Let's honestly talk about asylum in the United States, highlighting the real pros and cons. Next - from the first person.
Cons political asylum in the US
If the advantages are obvious and many people speak openly about them, then few people know about the disadvantages that they will have to face until they feel them for themselves. So, the main disadvantages that the author has highlighted for themselves are:
1. Terms of consideration. If you have weak grounds for asylum approval, then the possibility of considering the case during 7-8 years is a plus, because during this time you can find other ways of legalization. But if your case has very strong sides, and you want to get approval, a green card and the opportunity to get a US citizen passport as soon as possible, then the deadlines are a big disadvantage.
If previously called from the end of the queue, then now called from the beginning of the queue. This means that the one who filed recently will be called on the interview first. So at the moment, the waiting period for interviews for new asylum seekers has decreased from a few years to a few months.
USCIS is now planning to conduct an asylum interview in this order:
- First of all: the applications that were scheduled for the interview, but had to be postponed due to the applicant’s request or the needs of the USCIS.
- The second stage: Entries that expected 21 a day or less.
- Third turn: for all other applications that are pending approval, interviews will be scheduled, starting with new applications and continuing as previously submitted ones.
At the time of writing this information, on average, the waiting time for a call for an interview is a month and a half. But I am sure that the immigration service will eventually call everyone in the stated time - 21 day.
2. The procedure for the formation of the case. One of the biggest drawbacks in preparing a case on its own is that there are no real examples of winning and well-executed cases on the Internet. No one person will post their history for all to see, no company or lawyer will disclose the details of their clients' cases. Therefore, when forming a case yourself, you rely only on theory, without fully understanding how a successful case should look. Well, if you already have some experience working with documents, experience in practicing a lawyer or working in court instances. This will help a bit. But if this is not the case, then the chances of making a mistake are quite large.
3. Inability to leave the country. From the moment your documents are accepted by USCIS and until the end of the approval of your case, you cannot leave the United States. As you already understood, in the worst case, the consideration of the case can be delayed for 6-8 years and all this time you will not be able to leave the United States. No travel outside the country, no family visits. More precisely, you can leave, no one will keep you, but it is unlikely that you will be able to go back to the States.
4. Inability to return to the country of persecution. Even if you get approval, then you cannot return to your country (if it is a country of persecution). Of course, there are workarounds - to fly to a neighboring country and cross the border on an internal passport (if this is possible). Then in the passport will not be a mark about visiting your home country and theoretically you should not have problems. But it is theoretically. In fact - until you receive citizenship, you will not be able to officially visit your country.
5. Inability to see relatives. As you already understood, you will not be able to leave the country, and in order to see your relatives, you need them to come to you. And there are several difficulties. When filling out the I-589 form, you will need to specify the name of the parents and where they live. Further, when you receive the SSN, you will again indicate the parents. So, they will already be in the database, and when applying for a visa in the United States may be refused, as potential immigrants. I do not have statistics on refusals and approvals, but I can say for sure that the chance to get a refusal is much greater than visa approval (although there are friends whose parents were given a tourist visa in the USA while their children were in the process of considering political refuge).
6. Uncertainty. Perhaps the biggest minus is uncertainty. You live and do not know when there will be an interview, how long all the deadlines will be delayed, what decision will be made, what to do next, if there is a refusal and deportation. It’s hard to live in uncertainty, especially when you’ve already settled in the US and you don’t have much desire to return to your home country.
7. The possibility of deportation. If you are denied an interview and in all courts, then a decision will be made on your deportation to the country from which you came. Of course, there are still many opportunities to extend the term of stay in the United States, changing the evidence in the case or adding weighty arguments, but all this will only delay the inevitable - deportation.
Advantages of political asylum in the United States
After reading about the cons, many will think about the issue of legalization in the United States through obtaining political asylum. But you should not immediately discard this option, because, like any case, there are a number of advantages to political asylum. I want to note that speaking about the benefits, I do it only from personal experience and a vision of the situation. Perhaps your opinion or the opinion of other people will be different from the one described below.
1. Filing procedure I consider the first advantage of political asylum to be a relatively easy procedure. If we compare them in other ways of legalization, about which I wrote here, then the political asylum is the least demanding procedure. In fact, in order for your documents to be accepted and started to be considered, you only need to fill in the form I-589 and send it to your local USCIS office. From the time you receive your form with USCIS employees, you will be in the country legally until the time you decide the case.
Applications are accepted from all "willing". You can petition for political asylum, even if there is no valid reason for it. Here the principle “until the opposite is proved, you are right”. Therefore, until the judge decides that you do not have sufficient grounds for obtaining asylum, no one can doubt this. And before the decision is made, you live legally in the United States.
2. Legal life in the USA. Yes, you will not receive any immigration status, but will be in the so-called review process. And all the time while your case is being considered, you can legally live in the USA, using all the charms that exist in the country.
3. The right to work. If your case is not resolved within 150 days after accepting the USCIS documents, you can apply for a work permit, also get a SSN social security number, ID of the state you live in, and absolutely legal to get a driver's license of any category . From the moment you receive a work permit and SSN, new opportunities will open up before you - official work, lending by banks, the ability to take in leasing (rent with option to buy) cars and many other amenities. Within six months, you will own a set of rights that are available to most US citizens (except for certain moments).
4. Terms of consideration of the case. Before 30 January 2018, people who had applied for asylum waited for a call for an interview on 3-4. Recent changes in the procedure for the consideration of cases have reduced the time for calling for an interview to 1 a month. So now, having a strong case and all the grounds for obtaining asylum, you can be legalized in the US for 2-3 a month after filing for asylum. Perhaps one of the fastest ways to get legal immigration status at the moment.
5. The cost. Another plus is that applying for asylum does not require any investment, everything is absolutely free. If you decide to use the services of companies that help with the design and translation of all documents, the formation of the case and its submission, then the cost of services will be from 2000 $ and above. Immigration lawyers usually charge 6000 dollars for their services, but this price is rarely justified.
6. Chance for approval. According to unofficial statistics, about 25-30% of all cases are approved directly at the interview and about 80% more after the first court hearing. If a responsible approach to the drafting of the case, the selection of evidence, competently build the structure of the story and give a good reason, then the chances will increase significantly.
7. The opportunity to get a green card and apply for citizenship. One year after the approval of your political asylum, you get a permanent green card, and four years later you have the right to petition for US citizenship.
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