Seeking Asylum in America to Protect You and Your Family
Tennessee immigration attorney offers counsel and comfort to Asylees
There are places around the world where your religious beliefs, your associations, your gender – even what family you belong to and which person you love – can put your life in danger. Because of this, thousands of people seek asylum with the U.S. borders. It is a complicated process, even for those whose lives are in immediate danger; because of this, it is crucial that you choose an attorney who understands how to help your asylum claim move efficiently and effectively through the process.
You can find those attorneys in our Knoxville, Tennessee office. Our skilled team is sensitive to your situation, and understands how important it is that you reach safety. Patrick Slaughter knows how to put up a fight on your behalf – he has spent years protecting the rights of the accused. You can rest assured that someone is always fighting for your rights and your life when you work with us.
Who is eligible for asylum?
There are two different groups of people who seek asylum: those who are not in removal proceedings but file a claim for asylum – known as an Affirmative asylum claim – and those who are involved in a removal proceeding who wishes to file a claim – known as a Defensive asylum claim.
People who file defensive claims may also be facing criminal charges, or be accused of violating the U.S. immigration laws in some ways. An affirmative claimant is one who is seeking to leave his or her home country and live here instead, for safety reasons.
Generally speaking, an asylee from another country may fill out the Form I-589: Application for Asylum and Withholding of Removal if he or she has a credible fear of being persecuted or is being persecuted because of:
- Membership in a particular social group
- Political opinion
A person who feels that his or her family or life is in immediate danger from the government can apply, though all applicants are screened to ensure that the threat is real. You must prove you have a “credible fear” of being persecuted or harmed if you are returned to your native country. Once granted asylum, you may petition for your family to come to America as well through a Form I-730, Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition. After you have been here for a year, you may fill out a Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or to Adjust Status, to apply for your green card.
Patrick can help you with all these forms, to ensure that they are filled out correctly. Mistakes on the applications can cause your petition to be denied, and you may face removal from the U.S. He also goes to Memphis and Atlanta on behalf of clients who are being threatened with deportation. Because asylum cases can be expensive, Patrick offers his clients a fair and reasonable payment plan to help ease the burden of worrying about money. To us, your safety is more important than anything else.
Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)
Any person from any country in the world may petition for asylum, but the U.S. recognizes that certain groups may face dangers more often than others. Victims of human trafficking may be granted asylum (or granted a T Non-immigrant Status under the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act), for example. The USCIS may also designate a country or part of a country with Temporary Protected Status. A country may be given TPS if:
“[C]onditions in the country that temporarily prevent the country’s nationals from returning safely, or in certain circumstances, where the country is unable to handle the return of its nationals adequately. USCIS may grant TPS to eligible nationals of certain countries (or parts of countries), who are already in the United States. Eligible individuals without nationality who last resided in the designated country may also be granted TPS.”
Rampant civil war or natural disasters are included in the consideration of TPS status. Countries currently granted TPS include:
- El Salvador
- South Sudan
The U.S. may also grant asylum to people who are or were being abused by their spouses, parents or children if their spouses are U.S. citizens or permanent residents. The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) is part of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) allows victims of abuse to file the petition without the abuser knowing, to better keep them safe. The USCIS website lists all of the requirements of eligibility, and our attorneys can help you determine whether or not you fit those requirements.
People seeking asylum are in dangerous situations, and they need help in order to protect themselves. We can help with that. The most important part of your application is honesty: you can tell us the truth about what you are experiencing, and we promise we will never judge you. We want to help people live a long and happy life in a place that is safe and secure for you and your families.
Compassionate care for asylees here and abroad
Everyone deserves the right to live in a place that is safe. Patrick Slaughter knows that time is of the essence in asylum cases, and our team works with you to get your story told quickly and honestly, so that you can begin your new future. To schedule an appointment at our Knoxville, TN law firm, please call 865.272.4454 or fill out this contact form.