Top 10 Reasons for Asylum Denial
The Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) recently released its statistics on asylum rates from fiscal year (FY) 2009 through FY 2018 (through 6/30/2018). As of 6/30/2018, EOIR had a 42.42% denial rate and a 22.17% grant rate. This means that nearly half of the asylum applications were denied.
These are the top TEN (10) reasons why asylum cases are denied.
- Failure to timely submit an asylum application – Generally, there is a ONE (1) year filing deadline. This means that after a foreign national enters the United States, s/he must file an asylum application within ONE (1) year.
- Failure to provide an excuse when filing after the ONE (1) year deadline – In very limited circumstances, a foreign national can file for asylum after the ONE (1) year deadline. It is best to speak to a knowledgeable attorney to determine if a valid reason exists, which warrants a late filing.
- Failing to complete the asylum application correctly – USCIS Form I-589, Application for Asylum and for Withholding of Removal, is complex. Foreign nationals that do not speak English fluently may find it difficult to complete. Additionally, failing to answer the questions thoroughly may lead to a denial. We have seen asylum applications that were rejected merely because a person did not list their foreign address properly. We have also seen asylum applications that were rejected for not providing the required number of copies.
- Failing to provide sufficient evidence – It is never too late to obtain evidence. A knowledgeable attorney can advise clients on what type of documents s/he will need to build a strong case.
- Failing to prepare for the interview – Foreign nationals must provide their own interpreters and must be prepared to convince the asylum officer and/or judge that they qualify for asylum. A knowledgeable attorney can provide you with tips during the interview. Asylum applicants may not know how much to disclose or the purpose of the interview, which could lead to an asylum denial.
- Failing to hire an attorney or a new attorney – Foreign nationals may not be aware that they can hire an attorney even after filing their asylum application. Additionally, foreign nationals may not realize that they can hire a new attorney. If your attorney does not return your calls, has not provided you with a clear strategy, or does not take your case seriously, you have the option of hiring a new attorney to represent you.
- Hiring a non-attorney or unqualified attorney – Before you hire an attorney, we recommend that you meet with the attorney and read his/her online client testimonials. Afterward, ask yourself these questions: Is the attorney licensed and eligible to practice law? How easy was it to speak directly with the attorney? How long has the attorney been in business? Does the attorney have successful experience handling these types of cases?
- Missing appointments and deadlines – If you file the application yourself, USCIS will only send notifications to you. However, if you hire an attorney, your attorney will be notified as well. An experienced immigration attorney will notify you of changes related to your application. This will help you avoid missing important notices and/or deadlines.
- Being inconsistent with what is on your application and what you say during the asylum interview – It is important to tell the truth and the entire truth. Sometimes disclosing everything that happened may be a traumatic experience. However, failing to provide the government with a complete picture of your case may lead to a denial. A knowledgeable attorney will often ask who, what, when, where, why, and how to ensure that you provide the asylum officer with the information s/he needs to make an informed decision.
- Failing to qualify – This may appear obvious, but it is not. There are limited protected grounds for asylum, such as political opinion, race, religion, nationality, etc. It is easy to confuse one protected ground from another. For this reason, having an experienced immigration attorney by your side will help you ensure that your asylum case is successful.
For more information on Asylum in Texas, a consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (281) 777-1236 today. We have two convenient locations in north and south Houston, Texas.
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