Asylum Laws in Texas

Houston Immigration Attorney

The United States is considered a place of safety for refugees seeking protection from persecution in their country of origin. Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights discusses the right of all people to seek refuge from persecution in other countries. The United States offers safety for individuals coming from other countries where they have suffered persecution or are in reasonable fear of persecution based on protected characteristics.

Protected characteristics include:

  • Race
  • Religion
  • Membership in a particular group
  • Political beliefs

If you are eligible for asylum from United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), then you can find refuge in the country. Asylum is obtained by applying and filing Form I-589, which is the Application for Asylum and for Withholding of Removal. This form will need to be filed within one year of arriving in the United States. When you apply, you can include your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 who are also in the U.S.

Applying for Asylum

Obtaining asylum requires you to fulfill various requirements and ensure that your application is accurately completed. You must be able to establish past persecution, in which case the burden of proof is on the government to demonstrate that those circumstances are no longer present. If the applicant has lawful immigration status, he or she can submit an application for asylum to USCIS. If the application is denied, the case will be referred to an immigration judge.

Withholding of Removal

In order to qualify for withholding of removal, the person will need to demonstrate that it is more than likely that he or she will suffer persecution if forced to return to his or her country or origin. Obtaining withholding of removal is much more difficult because of higher standards of eligibility. It is also different in that it does not necessarily lead to permanent residency in the country. Contact our immigration lawyers in Houston today for the legal guidance you need for asylum or withholding of removal!

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