Suppose you are applying for affirmative asylum as an immigration lawyer. In that case, you will need to prepare and fill out form I-589 “Application or Asylum and withholding of removal” with US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
Answer everything truthfully and fill out all questions on Form I-589 as detailed as you can. Because when USCIS or an immigration judge reviews their form, they will inspect the application with the intent of looking for inconsistencies. If they have some uncertain answers or details, make sure that they state them to avoid confusion.
Form I-589 is the only form you will need when applying for asylum, withholding removal, and protection under the United Nations Convention Against Torture (UNCAT).
Take note that USCIS must receive their application within one year of their last entry into the US to be eligible for asylum.
How to prepare and submit Form I-589 (Affirmative Asylum Application)
When filling out and submitting Form I-589, you must be sure that they read and understood the instructions given by USCIS for form I-589. Also, they should not leave any blank spaces. If a question does not apply to them, fill it out as “not applicable”.
They must provide information regarding their race, religion, political opinion, nationality, and membership in a particular social group. Declare any information that will be vital in their case.
What is their reason for seeking asylum?
Check if they are eligible to seek refuge in the US. Are they being persecuted in their country because of their race, religion, political opinion, nationality, or membership in a particular social group?
If they have been persecuted or have evidence to believe that they will be persecuted, make sure that they discuss specific incidents and dates with as much detail as they remember in their own words. Being particular in their claims makes them more credible.
What to write in the declaration for asylum
They should write in their declaration their reason for leaving their country and why they are afraid of going back. And how race, religion, political opinion, nationality, or membership in a particular social group is a factor in their persecution.
A declaration is technically not required when applying for asylum, but it will strengthen the case by clarifying their intentions.
What else should you include in the application?
1. (1) Personal copy of Form I-589
2. (2) Copies of passport and US immigration documents
3. (2) Copies of other government ID’s: birth certificate, driver’s license, national ID, etc
Keep in mind that you should not submit any originals of their documents because there is a chance that USCIS will not return them.
What to expect after filing their asylum application
After USCIS receives the application, they will send you a receipt notifying you of their biometrics appointment details, followed by the details for their asylum interview. Afterward, they are allowed to stay in the US while their asylum application is being processed.