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What is Asylum?

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The United States grants legal residence to foreign nationals who fear they will be or have been persecuted. Asylum and refugee protections differ in that refugees are currently overseas while those that seek asylum are currently residing in the U.S. The criteria for individuals seeking asylum can be strict. In this blog, our York immigration attorney discusses what the basic grounds for seeking asylum are in the U.S.

Grounds for Asylum

You must provide evidence that you were a victim of persecution or you have a justifiable concern you will be persecuted in the future. You must prove you were in your home country when you were persecuted, and the persecution and the following grounds were the central reason for your persecution.

  • Religion
  • Race
  • Nationality
  • Political opinion
  • Membership to a specific social group

Classifying Persecution

With the exception of a section added in 1996 that included refugees undergoing a fear of coercive population control such a forced abortion or sterilization, the legislation does not clearly define types of persecution. Generally, it is defined as a serious threat, harm, or suffering to your life or freedom.

This could include any of the following:

  • Harassment
  • Constant surveillance
  • Torture
  • Imprisonment
  • Housing discrimination
  • Pressure to engage in illegal activities
  • Death threats

Persecution does not need to come from the government or law enforcement authorities to qualify you for asylum. The U.S. recognizes that you could be persecuted by religious groups, guerrilla groups, organized vigilantes, or other clans.

Let Our York Immigration Attorney Help You

If you are considering applying for asylum in the United States, it is in your best interest to contact our York immigration lawyer for help drafting your application, preparing your statement, and collecting various documents and evidence.

Give us a call to speak with an attorney from The Law Office of Rosina C. Stambaugh.

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