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Asylum/Refugee

Certain foreign nationals may qualify for asylum/refugee depending on where they are at the time of their application. If an immigrant files while in the U.S. and granted asylum, he/she is called an asylee. If an immigrant files while outside the U.S., he/she is called a refugee.

 

FAQ:

Q. Is there a deadline to apply for asylum?
A. To apply for asylum, an immigrant needs to apply within 1 year of his/her arrival to the U.S. If 1 year has gone by since arriving to the U.S., an immigrant cannot apply for asylum unless he/she can show some extraordinary circumstance, or change in circumstances in their home country.

Q. When do I get a green card if granted asylum?
A. If granted asylum, an immigrant may apply for a green card after 1 year.

Q. Can I apply for asylum even if I came to the U.S. illegally?
A. Yes. Irrespective of immigrant’s status, an immigrant can still apply for asylum.

Q. Can I apply for asylum even if I have a criminal record?
A. If an immigrant has committed a serious crime, it could bar him/her from obtaining an asylum status.

Q. Can I apply for asylum even if I have a criminal conviction outside the U.S.?
A. If an immigrant has committed a serious crime, even if outside the U.S., it could bar him/her from obtaining an asylum status.