Asylum in South Florida
The United States provides a safe haven for people around the world who have been persecuted or face persecution in their home countries. The U.S. government grants asylum to these individuals, allowing them to live far away from harm. After obtaining asylum, many of these refugees get their green cards to live in the country permanently.
While asylums are designed to protect vulnerable populations, the process is quite complicated. Far too many immigrants make mistakes on their asylum applications, causing them to return to their home countries. Because this is so important for your well-being, hiring a South Florida asylum lawyer is critical. The bilingual team at The Santos Law Offices understands the inner workings of the immigration and asylum system and is available to guide you through the process.
Types of Persecution
Asylum applicants must prove there is a threat of persecution in their home countries. The persecution must be related to:
- Political opinion
- Membership of social groups
Your South Florida asylum lawyer will help you gather evidence to prove that your fear is real so you can live in the United States.
Eligibility For Asylum In South Florida
You have to be in a U.S. port of entry or in the United States to file for asylum. If you are in another country, you’ll need to apply for refugee status instead of asylum. You also must have a fear of persecution or have experienced persecution in your home country. The persecution must be based on one of the five grounds recognized by the United States: race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group. To prove persecution, you must show that you face a threat to your freedom, life, or physical well-being. For instance, if you experience physical violence because of your religious beliefs, you’re being persecuted.
However, the threat cannot be an isolated event that occurs in one part of the country. It must be present nationwide, so simply moving to another area in your home country won’t allow you to avoid the problem. Still, the persecution does not have to be at the hands of the government.
Process For Applying For Asylum
After entering the U.S., you must file Form I-589, Application for Asylum and for Withholding of Removal. The USCIS will send two notices after receiving your petition. First, it will send you an acknowledgement that it received the form. Second, it will send a notice instructing you to get fingerprinted as part of the application. You will then get fingerprinted and undergo a background and security check.
Next, you will receive a notice to attend an interview. Your South Florida asylum lawyer can attend the interview with you to provide legal support. Then, the asylum officer will determine if you’re eligible for asylum. You can expect to receive the decision within two weeks of the interview.
Why Choose Santos Law offices
- Free Consultation – Go over your case during the free phone consultation.
- Highly Rated – The firm has received numerous rave reviews and recommendations on Google and Avvo.
- Bilingual – Dalyla Santos and the staff at The Santos Law Offices are fluent in English and Spanish, ensuring that each client receives proper representation.
- Multiple Practice Areas – The Santos Law Offices specializes in bankruptcy, civil litigation, insurance claims, and immigration.
- Personalized and Affordable Legal Services – Dalyla Santos truly cares about her clients. She provides personalized and affordable legal services to help individuals and citizens throughout South Florida.
- A Firm With Purpose – The Santos Law Offices gives back to the community through pro bono work, mentorships, and charitable donations. Also, employees are supported and recognized for the work they do.
How Long Does The Process Take?
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services typically rules on asylum requests within 180 days of receiving the application. However, complicated cases that include exceptional circumstances can take longer to process and approve. Your case can also take longer if you make mistakes on the application. Time is of the essence with these cases, so consult with a South Florida asylum lawyer. Your lawyer will go over the application with you and ensure it’s filled out properly before submitting it. This will expedite the process, so you should have a decision within six months of filling. If your application is denied, your attorney can then begin the appeals process.
How Long Do You Have To File For Asylum?
You must file for asylum within one year of entering the United States unless you meet certain conditions. An extension is granted if there was a change in circumstances that affected your eligibility for asylum. For instance, if something occurred in your home country that caused you to fear returning, you qualify for an extension. You also might qualify if you have extraordinary circumstances that caused a delay. For example, if you suffered a serious illness, you might be eligible to file for asylum after the one-year deadline. Speak to a South Florida asylum lawyer to find out if you are eligible to file if the deadline has passed.