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Asylum Adjustment of Status: A Comprehensive Guide

Asylum Adjustment Of Status
Asylum Adjustment of Status

Asylum status is a critical form of protection offered by the United States to individuals who have fled persecution or fear of persecution in their home countries. It provides a legal framework for those seeking safety and refuge. However, merely obtaining asylum is not the end of the journey.ย 

 

For many asylees, the next step involves adjusting their status to become lawful permanent residents of the United States. This process, known as asylum adjustment of status, is pivotal for individuals seeking stability and opportunities in their new home.ย 

 

This comprehensive guide aims to demystify the asylum adjustment of status process, outlining its significance, practical steps for asylees, the adjustment of status process itself, considerations for naturalization, and addressing frequently asked questions.

 

 

Understanding Asylee Status

 

Before looking at things like INA 245(i) Adjustment and Asylum Work Permit new rules 2024, itโ€™s important to be clear on the definition of asylee status and its meaning.

Definition and Implications of Asylee Status

 

Asylee status is granted to individuals who meet the legal definition of a refugee and are already present in the United States or are seeking admission at a port of entry. This designation allows them to stay and work in the country, protecting them from deportation to their home countries where they fear persecution.

Conditions Under Which the DoHS May Seek to Revoke Asylum

 

While this is a form of protection, certain conditions may lead the Department of Homeland Security (DoHS) to seek its revocation.ย 

 

These include fraud or misrepresentation in obtaining asylum, criminal convictions, or no longer meeting the criteria for asylum due to changed circumstances in your home country. An asylum lawyer can coach you on these revocation conditions to make sure that you protect your asylee status as you seek an adjustment.

Rare Instances of Asylum Revocation

 

Asylum revocation is a rare occurrence and typically requires substantial evidence of fraud, criminal activity, or a significant change in the conditions of the asylee’s home country. It is a complex legal process that involves careful consideration of the individual circumstances.

Practical Steps for Asylees

 

When looking for an asylum attorney near me, we advise you to be proactive and do whatever you can to protect your status and move forward in seeking legal permanent residency. There are numerous things you must do, including filing taxes and notification of address changes.

Change of Address โ€“ Importance of Notifying CIS About Address Changes

 

Asylees must notify U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) of any changes in their address within ten days of moving. Failure to do so may result in delays or complications in communication regarding their immigration status.

Derivative Asylum for Family Members

 

Family members of an individual granted asylum may be eligible for derivative asylum status. This allows them to apply for asylum based on their relationship with the principal asylee.ย 

 

It’s crucial to understand the requirements and procedures for derivative asylum to ensure family unity and protection. An immigration asylum lawyer can help you determine which relatives can be added as derivatives on your application.

Employment and Social Security Number

 

Asylees have the right to work in the United States and can apply for a Social Security Number (SSN) for employment purposes. Obtaining an SSN facilitates access to employment opportunities and certain benefits. Typically, you are given an SSN card during the asylum application process, but you can contact the SSA (Social Security Administration) to obtain one.

Public Benefits โ€“ Overview of Benefits Available to Asylees and How to Claim Them

 

Asylees are eligible for various public benefits, including healthcare, housing assistance, and educational programs. Understanding the available benefits and the application process is essential for accessing necessary support. Your attorney asylum experts can provide a list of available benefits relevant to your case and advise on the best course of action to apply for them.

Tax Obligations โ€“ Requirements for Asylees to Report Income Earned to the IRS

 

Asylees, like all U.S. residents, are required to report their income to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and fulfill their tax obligations. Familiarizing oneself with tax requirements ensures compliance with U.S. tax laws. You can find more information about taxation via the official IRS section for new immigrants.

Selective Service Registration

 

Male asylees aged 18 to 25 are required to register with the Selective Service System. Failure to register can have serious consequences, including ineligibility for certain federal benefits and citizenship.ย 

 

By registering for Selective Service, you are essentially stating that if the US government needed to enforce military conscription, you would be eligible for drafting. Itโ€™s essentially a safeguard implemented by the government to protect the nation against unforeseen events.

International Travel Guidelines

 

Asylees must seek permission before traveling internationally. Please obtain proper documentation to ensure their asylum status and ability to re-enter the United States.

 

While you are waiting for asylum interview date and your application is pending, you must obtain authorization (advanced parole) to travel abroad. This is Form I-131 (Application for Travel Document).ย 

 

This document allows you to re-enter the States and continue your application. However, you cannot return to your home country that you are fleeing from. By doing so, you are effectively admitting that your asylum plea isnโ€™t warranted.

Asylum Lawyer

Asylum Adjustment of Status Process

 

Now that you have a clear understanding of the asylum adjustment of status limitations and stipulations, we can discuss how the process works.

Eligibility Criteria โ€“ Conditions for Applying for Adjustment of Status

 

To apply for adjustment of status, an asylee must meet specific eligibility criteria, including continuous physical presence in the United States, no disqualifying criminal convictions, and admissibility.

Required Documents โ€“ Overview of Required Documents

 

The adjustment of status application requires various documents, including Form I-485, proof of identity, evidence of asylum status, and supporting documentation.

Filing Form I-485

 

Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, is the primary application form for adjusting status to that of a lawful permanent resident. Asylees must accurately complete and submit this form along with supporting documents to CIS.

Application Support Center Appointment (Biometrics)

 

After filing Form I-485, applicants are scheduled for a biometrics appointment at an Application Support Center (ASC). During this appointment, fingerprints and photographs are taken for background checks.

Asylum Interview Process

 

Asylees may be required to attend an interview with CIS as part of the adjustment of status process. This interview allows CIS to assess the validity of the application and the eligibility of the applicant for permanent residency.

Responding to Requests for Additional Evidence

 

CIS may request additional evidence or information to support an adjustment of status application. Asylees must promptly respond to these requests to avoid delays or denials.

Waiting for Approval and Checking Case Status

 

Once the adjustment of status application is submitted, applicants must wait for CIS to process their case. They can check their case status online using the USCIS Case Status Online tool.

Naturalization

 

Once your asylum pending status is approved and you have adjusted your status, you can consider the final hurdle – naturalization. Naturalization is the ultimate goal for many when applying for asylum, as it allows you to become a fully-fledged U.S. Citizen.

Timeline for Naturalization Eligibility

 

After becoming a lawful permanent resident through adjustment of status, asylees may be eligible to apply for naturalization after meeting specific residency and other requirements, such as a political asylum status check. Current requirements for naturalization include:

 

  • Have been a legal permanent resident for at least 5 years.
  • Or, be married to a U.S. citizen and have been a legal permanent resident for at least 3 years.
  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Be able to read, write, and speak basic English.
  • Be able to demonstrate you are of good moral character.

 

Once you are eligible, you can file Form N-400 and then follow the other processes, including a naturalization interview and citizenship test. Currently, the entire naturalization process, including form filing, interviews, and approval, takes between 18-24 months.

 

Asylum Status Adjustment
Asylum Status Adjustment

Benefits and Responsibilities of Becoming a U.S. Citizen

 

Naturalization confers numerous benefits, including the right to vote, eligibility for federal employment, and protection from deportation. It also comes with responsibilities, such as loyalty to the United States and obedience to its laws.

Benefits

 

  • The right to vote.
  • The right to petition to bring family members to the US.
  • A U.S. passport.
  • Eligibility for federal jobs.

Responsibilities

 

  • Give up allegiance to any other country.
  • Swear allegiance to the U.S.
  • Support and defend the Constitution.
  • Serve the country when required.

 

Itโ€™s important to note that the above benefits are only available as a U.S. Citizen. However, as seen above, gaining asylum adjustment of status approval grants you a range of other benefits, too.

Asylum Status Adjustment is Your Pathway to a Secure Future in the USA

The asylum adjustment of status process is a significant milestone for individuals seeking to establish permanent residency in the United States after being granted asylum. By understanding the requirements, procedures, and implications of this process, you can navigate the path to stability and integration more effectively.

 

If you are unsure of any of the involved processes or feel you require assistance to start your adjustment of status, please reach out to Santoshkhourny, the best asylum lawyer in USA – we have an in-depth understanding of US immigration and want everyone to have a fair chance at gaining legal permanent residency status.

FAQs

What is the significance of adjustment of status for asylees?

 

Adjustment of status allows asylees to become lawful permanent residents of the United States, providing them with stability, opportunities, and protection from deportation. Itโ€™s the next logical step after being granted asylum status.

How long does it take to adjust status after being granted asylum?

 

The processing time for adjusting status varies, but it typically takes several months to over two years to complete the process. Currently, the average processing time from the point of filing Form I-485 is between 8 months to two years.

Can family members of asylees also adjust their status?

 

Yes, family members of an individual granted asylum may be eligible for derivative asylum status and can apply for adjustment of status accordingly.

Do asylees need to prove they are not likely to become a public charge when applying for an adjustment of status?

 

Yes, applicants for adjustment of status must demonstrate that they are not likely to become dependent on public benefits.

What documents are required for adjustment of status application?

 

Required documents include Form I-485, proof of identity, evidence of asylum status, and supporting documentation. This can include photographs, medical examination records, information about upcoming travel plans, and your I-94 record.

Can asylees travel internationally while their adjustment of status application is pending?

 

Asylees must obtain permission before traveling internationally while their adjustment of status application is pending to avoid jeopardizing their immigration status. If you attempt to travel abroad without an asylum approval letter, your adjustment of status application will be rejected.

Is there a fee for adjustment of status application?

 

Yes, there is a filing fee for Form I-485, the primary application for adjustment of status. However, fee waivers may be available for those who qualify based on financial hardship. The fee for under-14s is $750.00, while the fee for anyone over the age of 14 is $1,140. There may also be a biometrics appointment fee of $85.00

What are the tax obligations for asylees adjusting their status?

 

Asylees adjusting their status to lawful permanent residents are required to fulfil their tax obligations like any other U.S. resident. This includes reporting all income earned worldwide to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and filing annual tax returns. Asylees must comply with federal, state, and local tax laws, ensuring accurate reporting of income, deductions, and credits.

How soon can asylees apply for naturalization after adjusting their status?

 

After adjusting your status to lawful permanent resident (LPR), you may be eligible to apply for naturalization, typically after residing continuously in the United States for a specified period. The general requirement is five years of permanent residency, although certain exceptions may apply, such as for spouses of U.S. citizens.

What resources are available to assist asylees with the adjustment of status process?

 

Asylees navigating the adjustment of status process can access various resources to help them understand requirements, complete forms accurately, and address any challenges they may encounter. Counsel from a qualified asylum attorney is a great starting point, but checking the USCIS website and DoHS website is also valuable as they have a range of resources and guides.

 

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