Cities and Towns in the United States > Social > How To Request Asylum in the US


The US is among the countries that give asylum to specific people from countries they have treaties with. If you find yourself cornered and fearing for your life, you should find out if you can escape to America and start a new life. Here’s how you can request asylum once you get to this point.

U.S. Refugee Admissions program

What Is Asylum

Asylum is the protection of a refugee who escaped from their country due to political reasons. These individuals usually flee their native lands for fear of being executed during political clashes. In the US, the Citizenship and Immigration Office is responsible for granting a person asylum.

Who Can Apply?

Asylum seekers must fulfill particular criteria to provide a smooth transition when seeking shelter. First, they must be victims of persecution due to religion, race, nationality, political opinion, and being members of a particular social group.

Aside from these, you must also not have a criminal record for crimes against humanity and broken US immigration laws in the past.

You might also want to read this article on how to clean a criminal record.

Where and When Should You Apply?

Asylum seekers must apply for this provision at the port of entry when they land in the country. If they are already in the US, they should report to the nearest US Citizenship and Immigration point and apply for asylum in your state of residence. In the latter case, this should be done within the first year of entry into the nation.

Requirements And Documentation Needed

Every applicant must have particular documents to support their asylum application. When submitting the forms, you should attach the following:

  • • Passport-sized photos.
  • • Immigration documents.
  • • Two photocopies of your passport.
  • • Two copies of any other identification document.
  • • An application fee of $50 for applicants who send requests from October 2, 2022.
  • • An original and copy of your declaration.
  • • A cover letter.
  • • Expert declaration from medical experts and psychiatrists to ascertain mental and physical abuse.
  • • Expert declaration by a human rights activist familiar with your country’s conditions.
  • • Any other necessary documents and forms required of you.

What Happens After You Apply?

Once you send your application, you will receive an appointment letter with details of the date and location for the biometrics appointment, then an invitation for an asylum interview. After the consultation, the UCIS will grant or deny you asylum, depending on its observation.

The US government protects the rights of asylees and refugees, thereby permitting them to work in the country. However, you can’t work in government agencies or hold office until you apply for citizenship. Also, the US federal government allows asylees to bring their family members with them. However, when seeking asylum, you must fill out separate forms for each child or spouse.

Before applying for a green card, asylees and refugees must have a permanent residence status. Refugees can apply for a green card five years after they apply for permanent resident status.

Validity And Processing Time

The asylum status is valid as long as there’s unrest in the seeker’s country or until the asylee returns to their country. The USCIS will have grounds to believe your life is no longer in danger and will revoke your status.

Processing time varies from case to case, but you should generally receive a report within two to three months after the application.