American immigration law is a confusing subject. Some cases are handled quickly and easily. Others take years and involve many twists and turns. One of the areas that is full of misunderstandings is the right to seek asylum.
A Clear Right That Is Anything But Clear
According to the Refugee Act of 1980, anyone who has fled persecution in their home country based on their race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion has the right to seek asylum. If you are unwilling or unable to return to your home country because you’ve been persecuted, or rightfully fear you will be persecuted, you can seek asylum.
The trick is that you won’t necessarily be granted asylum so easily. You have to get to the U.S. and then go through a very difficult process to be granted asylum. You may also have to wade through misinformation and unhelpful policies designed to make the process even harder.
One major obstacle many people face when seeking asylum is a policy known as Title 42. Part of a law passed during World War II, Title 42 allows officials at the border to quickly deport migrants in order to stop the spread of a contagious disease. Most recently, Covid-19 is the excuse given to expel people from the country. The policy is still in effect, despite the changing nature of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Right Kind of Persecution
Fleeing your home country because of persecution is a nightmare. While it would be fair to expect sympathy, refugees are often confronted with skepticism. Many people who have endured terrible things are turned away because they can’t prove they were persecuted for one of the protected reasons.
It’s not enough to be subjected to violence. It’s not even enough to be targeted and driven from your home. You must be able to prove why you were persecuted. You must make your case for why you were targeted and why you deserve to be granted asylum. You have to prove you deserve asylum. The government does not have to prove you don’t deserve it.
Types of Evidence
Your testimony is obviously an important piece of evidence about the persecution you’ve faced. If possible, however, it shouldn’t be the only evidence you present. If you can get other witnesses to testify, find documents supporting your claims, or produce other evidence that shows what you’ve suffered or why, it can improve your chances greatly.
Get Help From a Knowledgeable Dallas Immigration Attorney
At Mark Jacobs, P.C., we help the immigrant community navigate the legal system. We have decades of experience in immigration law, including cases involving legal asylum. To speak to a skilled lawyer about your situation, call our Dallas offices at 972-445-7577 or contact us online to set up a consultation.