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When and how should I apply for asylum?

When you seek asylum in the United States, there are some interesting points that you have to consider. Making sure that you do everything in accordance with the laws set forth in the U.S. helps your chances of having your asylum application approved. Our Arizona readers might find the answers to some basic questions helpful as they work on applying for asylum.

How do I apply for asylum?

You must file an Application for Asylum and for Withholding of Removal, which is a Form I-589. When you fill out the form, you can include your children and spouse on the application. If you include your children on your application, those children must be unmarried and under 21 years old.

If you are granted asylum and choose to bring your children or spouse to the U.S. later, you have two years after you were granted asylum. This is done using Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition, which is Form I-730.

When should I apply for asylum?

Applying for asylum should be done as soon as possible. You have up to one year after coming into the U.S. to file for asylum. The sooner you apply for asylum, the sooner you will have a decision. When your application for asylum is approved, you will be able to start working in the U.S.

Can I work while I wait on a decision?

If 150 days have elapsed since your asylum application was filed in its entirety and you haven't gotten a decision on that application, you can apply for permission to work. This employment authorization would allow you to work so you could earn money.

Can I get a green card?

One year after you are granted asylum, you can apply for a green card by using the Application to Register Permanent Residence or to Adjust Status, which is a Form I-485. You must fill one out for everyone who was granted asylum based on your asylum case.

As you can see, the process of seeking asylum and getting your family to the states is complex. Working with someone familiar with immigration issues might help you out along the way.

Source: United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, "Asylum" Nov. 08, 2014

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