Individuals who have already entered the U.S. who are either at the border or entered without inspection are eligible for asylum if they came to the United States to escape persecution in their home country. Unfortunately, not everyone who has fled their home country to escape persecution and arrived in the United States qualifies for relief through asylum.
First, you must show 2 things:
- You are unable or unwilling to return to your home country because you have been persecuted there in the past or have a well-founded fear that you will be persecuted if you go back.
- The reason you have been (or will be) persecuted is connected to 1 of 5 protected grounds:
- membership in a particular social group; or
- political opinion
You must also make sure that one of the bars to asylum do not apply to you such as the 1-year filing deadline bar. You will need to file your application within 1 year of arriving to the United States unless you qualify for one of the exceptions to the 1-year filing deadline. You should consult an experienced immigration attorney to find out whether you may qualify for an exception to this deadline.
You should also consult with an experienced attorney if you wish to know whether you are eligible for asylum under one of the protected grounds and in order to make sure one of the bars to asylum will not prevent your eligibility or your application's success.