Evaluating the Threat Posed by Refugees

by Jason Dzubow on December 8, 2016

Last month, a Somali refugee and college student drove his car into a crowd at his university, jumped out, and started stabbing people. He was quickly shot dead by a campus police officer. The assailant, Abdul Razak Ali Artan, apparently left Somalia, lived for a time in Pakistan, and was resettled as a refugee in the United States in 2014. After the incident, Donald Trump tweeted that Mr. Artan “should not have been in our country.”

TV shows based on misunderstandings are hilarious; government policies, not so much.

TV shows based on misunderstandings are hilarious; government policies, not so much.

Incidents like this–where a refugee or asylee commits a (probable) terrorist act–are exceedingly rare. As far as I know, the only other successful attack involving “refugees” was the Boston Marathon bombing, perpetrated by two brothers who came to the U.S. as derivatives of their parents’ asylum case. Since 2001, the U.S. has admitted approximately 785,000 refugees and roughly 400,000 asylum seekers. So if all these numbers are accurate (a big “if”, as discussed below), then the odds that any given refugee or asylee is a terrorist is 1 in 395,000 or 0.0000844%.

In looking at the question of refugees/asylees and terrorism, the main problem is that the numbers listed above are not accurate. First, there is no consistent way to count people entering and leaving the United States. The refugee numbers are probably more accurate (though it’s unclear to me whether all aliens admitted for humanitarian reasons are included in the count), but asylum numbers are all over the map. Part of the problem is that different agencies (DHS and DOJ) deal with asylum applicants, and they seem to count people differently–sometimes derivative asylees are counted; other times, only the principal is counted. How do the agencies count people whose cases are pending? What about people granted other forms of relief (like Withholding of Removal or Torture Convention relief)? How are family members who “follow to join” the principal applicant counted? I have no idea about any of this, and there is no easily available data source to help. Not surprisingly, the dearth of data has opened the door to conspiracy theorists and anti-immigration advocates who claim we have an “open borders” immigration policy. But the absence of data also creates problems for fair-minded policy makers. How can we make appropriate decisions when we do not have a decent understanding of what is going on?

A second problem is that we do not have reliable information about how many non-citizens are involved in terrorist activities. Last summer, Senators Jeff Sessions (Donald Trump’s current nominee for Attorney General) and Ted Cruz sent a letter to the Obama Administration claiming that at least 380 of 580 people convicted of terrorism charges in the U.S. between September 11, 2001 and December 31, 2014 are foreign born. According to the Senators, “Of the 380 foreign-born, at least 24 were initially admitted to the United States as refugees, and at least 33 had overstayed their visas.” The letter further claims that since early 2014, 131 individuals have been “implicated” in terrorist activities. Of those, “at least 16 were initially admitted to the United States as refugees, and at least 17… are the natural-born citizen children of immigrants.” Using these numbers and the (admittedly questionable) refugee and asylee numbers listed above, the odds that any given refugee or asylee is involved in terrorist activities is still pretty low: One refugee/asyee out of every 28,902 will be involved in terrorist activities (or about 0.0035% of refugees/asylees).

The Senators were only able to come up with their figures based on publicly-available sources (like news articles), since DHS did not release immigration information about the 580 individuals convicted of terrorist-related activities, or the 131 people “implicated” in such activities. Whether DHS’s failure to release this information is prosaic (perhaps confidentiality or technical issues pose a challenge) or nefarious, we do not know, since apparently, the agency has not responded to the Senators’ requests. The fact is, Senators Sessions and Cruz are correct: We need more data about the people who are entering our country, and we need to know whether refugees and asylees (and others) are committing crimes or becoming involved with terrorism. Not only will this better allow us to make appropriate policy decisions, but it will also help prevent the type of fake news that is currently filling—and exploiting—the information gap.

But of course, the situation is more complex than any statistics alone might show. Some people who become involved in terrorism are mentally ill individuals exploited by terrorists (or–sometimes–by over-zealous law-enforcement officers). In other cases, people providing support to a “terrorist” group overseas do not know that the group is involved in harmful activities, or they do not understand that the U.S government views the group as dangerous. Also, as I have discussed previously, the “material support” provisions of our anti-terrorism legislation are extremely broad, and so people who seem far removed from terrorit activities can get caught up by our overly-broad laws.

Nevertheless, we need to know more about foreign-born individuals–including asylum seekers and refugees–who are implicated in terrorist-related activities, and the basic starting point for any such analysis is the statistical data about who is coming here, how they are getting here, and whether they are accused or convicted of crimes or terrorist-related activities.

Assuming we do get some accurate data, the question then becomes, How do we evaluate such information? How do we balance concrete examples of non-citizens engaged in criminal or terrorist activities, on the one hand, with the benefits of our refugee program, on the other?

And by the way, despite what some anti-refugee advocates might argue, our refugee and asylum programs provide concrete benefits: They establish us as a world leader in the humanitarian realm, they demonstrate our fealty to those who have stood with us and who support our values (and thus encourage others to continue standing with us), they provide our country with diverse and energetic new residents who are grateful for our generosity and who contribute to our society. These programs also represent an expression of who we are as a people. As I have frequently argued, for us to abandon these programs–and the humanitarian ideals that they represent–due to our fear of terrorism is a victory for the terrorists.

But we also need to balance our humanitarian policies and our national security. We need to better understand the issues–so that the public can be more well-informed and so policy makers have the information they need to make good decisions. I hope the new Administration will shine some light on these issues, so that any changes to our refugee and asylum policies are based on accurate information, and not on conjecture or fear.

{ 84 comments… read them below or add one }

Jay April 3, 2017 at 1:07 pm

Hi Jason ,

My asylum case is pending and I have the final court appearance on September . However I got convicted for dwi and still on probation till December ( 1 year probation with 4th degree misdemeanor) . I’m sacred that I might get deported prior to the court date . What are my options ? Should I leave the country to avoid getting arrested?

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Jason Dzubow April 4, 2017 at 10:43 am

Usually, one DUI is not a deportable offense. You should talk to a lawyer, though, as it could affect your immigration court case. Take care, Jason

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Retrac March 17, 2017 at 10:43 pm

Is it legal to work from home?(IT jobs, online jobs) while waiting on the asylum status?

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Jason Dzubow March 19, 2017 at 10:34 am

In order to work legally, you need a work permit. If you work without a work permit, it generally should have no effect on an asylum case. Take care, Jason

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Sariar December 18, 2016 at 5:17 am

Dear Jason
I have question for you, I applied for asylume in 2013 they transfer my case in the court. so Im facing first hearing, If i get married with us Green Card holder what will be the next status on court? is my case will suspend and i will get adjustment or its not gonna work. Please write me more briefly..

Thank you, Jason

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Jason Dzubow December 19, 2016 at 7:35 am

It depends on the Judge and how close your spouse is to getting her US citizenship. Until she has that, you cannot get your green card without leaving the US, and this may or may not be possible. You should have a lawyer help guide you through this process, as it can be tricky, especially if you have an uncooperative Judge. Take care, Jason

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nabeel December 20, 2016 at 2:09 pm

hi sir

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nabeel December 20, 2016 at 2:10 pm

you can help me

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Jason Dzubow December 21, 2016 at 7:23 am
Ray December 16, 2016 at 2:19 pm

And what u think about this person, is he a good Muslim or bad Muslim?
or he was a good Muslim and then became bad???
it is same story of San Bernardino , CA…and will continue to happen more and more…
Good Muslim Suddenly turned to bad Muslim….that simple!!!
We need to identify what is the reason??? its clear for me, because I came from a Middle Eastern Country….
But for your politicians …I believe they NO nothing

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fary December 16, 2016 at 12:30 pm

Hi Jason
I applied i589 two years ago and I have renew permit work I send a letter to Huston office and explained my situation and requesed for expidite my intervew but I didnt reciev any answer what do you think ?how can request for expidite ? Do I have to fill some form?what do you think about when I have intervew? I m living with my kids and my husband is living my country right now ….. Thank you

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scopa December 15, 2016 at 8:56 pm

Hi Jason, I have a quick question
I have applied for asylum in October 2016 and my clock is approaching is ticking (hopefully). I have nothing to do and I started reading driving license guideline and wanted to take an online certification program. Is it possible to do so? I am staying in Arizona

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Mary December 15, 2016 at 10:03 pm

I did my exam online and then got my DL test and exams with no problem ) good luck!

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scopa December 16, 2016 at 1:25 am

Thank you marry; I didn’t get the Work permit yet. Is it possible to take DL without work permit? Please share me ur experience

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Jason Dzubow December 16, 2016 at 12:10 pm

It depends on the state. For example, we recently had clients in Maryland get the driver’s license and all they have is the asylum receipt. Other states, like Virginia, do not seem to allow anyone to get the driver’s license until they have the work permit. Take care, Jason

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Jason Dzubow December 16, 2016 at 12:09 pm

I do not know why that would be a problem. If they let you take the class, it should not be a problem in terms of your asylum case. Take care, Jason

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Mary December 15, 2016 at 1:12 pm

Hi Jason,

Thank you so much for all your help!

I have a question regarding the SF office. I live in Portland, OR, and have asked them about the expected interview date. They just said that they are interviewing people who who filed their asylum application in August 2013. On the asylum scheduling bulletin I see that in Sep 2016, San Francisco office interviewed people who applied in Sep, 2014. Do they have a separate scheduling bulletin for Portland? Why they are saying August, 2013?

Thank you!

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Jason Dzubow December 16, 2016 at 12:07 pm

I do not know why they say that, but it may be that Portland is a sub-office (maybe your interview will be in Seattle, which I believe does have a sub-office), and so maybe they are giving you the date for the sub-office. Normally, sub-offices are slower than the main office, so that does make sense. Take care, Jason

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Mary December 16, 2016 at 3:23 pm

Thanks, Jason. It looks like you are right, they have a separate line for Portland residents. Here is their reply:
“Currently, we are scheduling asylum interviews in Portland for applicants who filed their asylum application in August 2013.

Sincerely,

USCIS
San Francisco Asylum Office”

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Ad December 14, 2016 at 10:00 pm

Hi Jason. Thanks for ur help always. Finally today I did my interview. So interview was very good. They told me that after 15 days come and collect your decision. Thanks Jason for ur good suggestion always.

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Jason Dzubow December 15, 2016 at 7:04 am

Good luck, but be aware that in many cases (more than 50%), the interviews are not ready in 15 days. Hopefully, yours will be, but it is best to stay patient until you have the (hopefully good) decision in your hands. Good luck, Jason

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Sasha December 14, 2016 at 6:21 pm

Good afternoon Jason.
Thank you for all the time you dedicate working with asylum applicants and providing so much useful information and advise.
I have a quick question on travelling. Me and my husband have pending asylum case and we wanted to travel to Puerto Rico for New Years. I can’t find information anywhere on whether we technically leave US or not. We really want to travel there but we can’t jeopardize our case if it will be considered leaving US.

thanks in advance!

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Jason Dzubow December 15, 2016 at 7:03 am

I have had clients go there while they have pending cases and it has not been a problem, but I do not recommend such travel. It should be fine, but it is not something I have researched so I cannot give a definitive answer. Take care, Jason

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JN December 14, 2016 at 7:40 am

Hello everyone,
I did not receive a receipt notice or a biometrics notice but my lawyer did. The address on the forms is the correct address. Has anyone experienced this?
I am worried that I have to apply for my work permit and don’t know if I’ll get it.
Could USCIS be sending to the wrong address or poster is the problem!
I’ll appreciate your ideas

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Jason Dzubow December 14, 2016 at 7:50 am

This happened to one of my client (maybe you are my client). I think that if the address on the I-765 form (the EAD application) is correct, you should receive everything unless there is a problem with mail delivery to your house. If so, you can always use another mailing address, like a friend’s house or a PO Box. Take care, Jason

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cod December 13, 2016 at 7:16 pm

Hello Jason. Sorry for the off topic question, I will be very grateful if you can answer it. My parents have green card, not citizenship. They were this year in my country for exactly 6 month, can they go this year 2016 back in our country, will this affect their documents, won’t they be banned from entering USA? Thank you very much !

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Jason Dzubow December 14, 2016 at 7:37 am

Sorry – I can only answer questions related to asylum. Take care, Jason

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ahmed December 13, 2016 at 6:54 pm

dear Jason, can you please help me am from Yemen
as you know in the middle east or my country Yemen man can marry more than one wife.
when i, came here with visit visa I add my first wife as i can’t add the second one, i have been here one year so my first wife left me and asked for devours because she can’t wait for me and left with her family because of the war. so am seeking asylum here can i add my second with to be the first wife and the one and only I know this may be very complicated case, and show some evidence that I no longer have my first wife something like that I hope you understand what am trying to explain as much as my poor English thank you so much.

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Jason Dzubow December 14, 2016 at 7:36 am

I do not know. If a person is married to more than one wife, under US law, he can be barred from immigrating here. Also, it sounds like you did not tell the truth on your application about the second wife, so that may also create problems for you. Maybe there is a way to address these issues, but you will need a lawyer who can look closely at the specifics of your case. Take care, Jason

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Angela December 12, 2016 at 5:17 pm

Me and my bf we met each other 3 years ago while I was in US with J1visa but unfortunate my visa was about to expired so I decided to come back to my country. After that he had applied for asylum status and earned work permit after that so he status is pending now. Our first plan was he to join the army in MAVNI program but it just closed recently.

So if I came to US with tourist visa and get marriedwith my bf is it possible to get married and I would probably join his asylum case?ans stay legally longer with him?
do I need a lawyer to deal with the case?
will it slow down his case or not?
P.S. We are not the same country my country is not the country that could apply asylum case.
Thank you very much for your help

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Jason Dzubow December 13, 2016 at 7:23 am

If you are legally married, you can join his case. Contact the local asylum office for instructions on how to do that. You can find their contact info if you follow the link at right called Asylum Office Locator. It should not slow down his case. The fact that you are from another country probably will not affect his case, but it could. For this part, I recommend you talk to a lawyer to evaluate how the marriage to you might affect his case. Take care, Jason

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Angela December 13, 2016 at 9:01 am

Thank you very much Jason I reallly appriciated your kindness, I’ve been struggling for almost 3years and my bf almost giving up and getting married for G.
So I will try to contact lawyer first..but if you could help me recommend a good lawyer who work in Dallas or Houston it would help me alot cause I’m working in middle east country right now.
Thank you again.

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Jason Dzubow December 14, 2016 at 7:22 am

I do not have a lawyer to recommend there. You might try AILA (American Immigration Lawyers Association) – they have a referral list. You can also try looking up an immigration NGO there – some of them recommend lawyers too. Take care, Jason

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Sasha December 12, 2016 at 4:18 pm

Hi jason. I recently received my US citizenship. I need to petition for my sister who is currently “inside” the US. She came here 4 years ago using H1-B. Later on she applied for Asylum. Her H1-B has expired, and she is allowed to stay in the US, as she is pending asylum (did the asylum interview but pending for answer since 2 years). My question, when I submit the I-130, do I need to provide copies of her original I-94, old H1-b visa, and I-589 asylum receipt notice to show that she is legally staying in the US. Or no need to submit any status papers right now, and just wait bunch of years until her turn comes to the front of the line?

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Jason Dzubow December 13, 2016 at 7:20 am

The I-130 only requests that the US government recognize that your relationship as siblings is true, so the documents you mention are not needed. If it is approved, the waiting period is about 14 years and she most likely would need to leave the US and collect her green card overseas (which may or may not be possible, depending on the case). The asylum case should have no affect on the I-130, as long as all the info in both applications in consistent. Take care, Jason

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Lilian December 12, 2016 at 4:00 pm

Hi Jason,
I applied for TPS 2 months ago before my current H4 VISA status expires. and did the biometrics almost 5 weeks ago. My visa will expire within one week.
1- Can I stay in the US while pending answer for TPS?
2- How long usually it takes them to answer. I know you won’t have the exact time frame answer. but just an estimation as I applied myself, and I don’t have an attorney to ask.

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Jason Dzubow December 13, 2016 at 7:17 am

I do not do much TPS, but you can stay here while the application is pending. How long it takes, I do not know. Take care, Jason

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A. S. December 12, 2016 at 3:57 pm

Hi Jason,

There is something I want to understand. What does mean “in-status”? I came in US on B2 visa 2 months ago.At the POE, I received 6 months of permanancy. I am planning to apply for asylum this month.

Thank you

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Jason Dzubow December 13, 2016 at 7:16 am

“In status” means that your 6-month period of stay has not expired. After that, you are “out of status” unless you change to another status (usually done using form I-539). If you apply for asylum, you are allowed to stay here lawfully, but you are not “in status” as the term is used in immigration law. Take care, Jason

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Solomon December 12, 2016 at 11:15 am

Hi Jason,
Unfortunately I lost my EAD(I can’t forgive myself for that). But currently I am working and I don’t need it immediately. But I may be forced to look other job soon. It will expire after 7 months. What do you recommend me ? just wait 3 more months and apply for renewal or apply now for replacement? I have a color scanned copy of both front and back page.

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Hyme December 12, 2016 at 12:54 pm

Hello,

I’m not sure but I guess you may have to make a copy of the front and the back of the last EAD card when you will have to renew it. If you don’t do it you might have an incomplete application. I think it could be better to report the lost . Anyway, let’s wait for Jason argument on that matter.

Regards,

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Jason Dzubow December 13, 2016 at 7:38 am

If you have evidence that it is lost (maybe you can get a police report?), you can apply to renew it now. And I suppose it is better to get a new one. However, you can save money if you wait 3 months and then file to renew (even if you have the card, you are able to renew up to 120 days before it expires). If you choose to file now, be aware the USCIS fees will go up on December 23, so you may want to file before then. Take care, Jason

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Asylum seeker December 12, 2016 at 4:05 am

Jason,

You have a very good article, however, the calculations you make are a wrong and little misleading.

First of all, chances of a refugee or asylee being a terrorist are 0.00025%. Redo the calculation!

Secondly, in general chances of anyone being a terrorist are very low, way below 0.01% So instead of calculating absolute chances of a refugee or asylee being a terrorist, you should compare chances of a US citizen or any other legal person leaving in the US (except for refugees and asylees) vs. chances of an asylee/being a terrorist.

Here is a rough estimate:
Number of nonR/A=319 mln (US population) – 12 mln (illegals) – 1 mln (Ref/Asy)=306 mln
Number of convicted terrorists since 9/11=580
Chances of nonR/A being a terrorist= 580/(306 mln)*100%=0.00019%
Chances of R/A being a terrorist=3/(785,000+400,000)*100%=0.00025%
I.e. R or A is 30% more likely to be a terrorist than other legal person in the US.
However, if we use figure 16 that Jeff Sessions found somewhere, then
Chances of R being a terrorist=16/785,000*100%=0.00204%
Or in other words a refugee is 10 times (!!!) more likely to be a terrorist than other legal person in the US.

Of course, accuracy of these calculations depends on whether we, the public, know the immigrant status of those 580 convicted terrorists, and we don’t.

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Jason Dzubow December 12, 2016 at 7:47 am

Thank you – I will have to check the math. Part of the problem is the definition of “terrorism conviction.” Most of the people convicted for this are convicted for providing some type of support to a group that the US views as terrorists. The definition is very broad, and people can be convicted who are simply ignorant about how the US views the group that they support. Foreign people are more likely to support such groups, as many of these groups are essentially unknown to most Americans. Overall, though, we need better public data about who is coming here and what criminal or terrorist activities they may be involved with. Take care, Jason

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Pierre December 11, 2016 at 11:49 pm

Hi Jason , I have a question . I have two questions that I would be thankful if you can answer them separately .
1- I came to U.S 4 years ago as a student and always be in status with high grades , I have applied for asylum in March2016 and Recently I’ve got my EAD in less than 3 weeks( big surprised ) , Now I have finished my associate in college and Since my tuition is high in university I like to work and do not attend to school as a full time student for a while , Since my asylum case is pending , I know there are some pros and cons to maintain status while you have a pending asylum , I also like to know do I have to acknowledge anybody in school or USCIS about my status changing and will I face any problem by immigration office or any court in the future?
2-I have asked about advance parole from you before and finally I’ve got the advance parole approved ( after 4 months ) for a hair transplant surgery that I have in Canada and they allowed me to be out of country for only 29 days , from 8Jan 2017 to 7 Feb 2017, Will I take a risk while I come back to U.S ? and do you have any suggestion for me before my trip please ?
Thank you so much.

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Jason Dzubow December 12, 2016 at 7:40 am

1 – If you want to try to stay in-status, maybe you can get OPT – the advantage is that you will maintain the F-1 visa if you get an opportunity to later change to another visa (like H1b), you will not have to leave the US to get the new visa. As for telling the school, I do not know about that. Most of my clients do not inform the school, and I do not see negative implications. However, I do not know whether you have an obligation under the terms of your visa to inform them. 2 – You should not be at risk when you return, as long as you have no prior deportation orders or criminal convictions. If you are concerned about that, talk to a lawyer before you travel. Take care, Jason

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Pierre December 12, 2016 at 11:45 am

Thank you so much Jason , Just a quick check up for my first question :

1- I do not want to maintain my F1 at this moment because of the high tuition fee in University , And I can’t apply for H1B because I only got my associate , I need the bachelor for that, So in your experience with your client who were asylum pending and did not maintain their F1 did USCIS ask any of them to come to the court to explain why they did not maintain their F1 status and violated their previous status ?

2- For parole , Yes I have asked my lawyer before ,and I like to know your opinion too.

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Asylum seeker December 13, 2016 at 3:53 am

Pierre,

There are some states that will consider you a resident for educational purposes after you have lived there for 1 year and have your asylum case pending for 1 year (both should be true.) I strongly encourage you to move to CA, FL or NY if you don’t live there already and go to school once you become eligible for reduced tuition.

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Pierre December 13, 2016 at 7:17 pm

Hello . Thanks for your answer .
I didn’t know that and I have just acknowledge from that in the last couple days , So you only give me the new information and its appreciated , I live in Texas and If I go to another state , I only worry that my timeline for the interview would be increase , I know Jason mentioned many times that it should not be happen regarding to USCIS , But he never recommended that , So I believe the only way is to ask the school for that ? I applied for my SSN today and I’m living in Texas for almost 4 years but I think I have to wait one year more to be eligible for that matter , Am I right?

Jason Dzubow December 13, 2016 at 7:39 am

I have never had a client have a problem because he stopped attending school on an F-1 and just continued his asylum case. We have had clients use Advance Parole and we have not had any problems. Take care, Jason

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Pierre December 13, 2016 at 11:56 pm

Thanks Jason , Your accurate knowledge , your words and your positively really make my fear away from me , your blog help a lot of people and what you do is really valuable , I know you dedicate your time to help us but from the day I found your website , all of my fear has gone and your hard work and your blog is make our heart warm.

Dave December 11, 2016 at 10:00 pm

If my timeline helps people waiting here,
Submitted application to Arlington in September 2013; interviewed in April 2015; Got decision 2 weeks later; granted. Wish you all the best.
P.s Jason I still follow you blog even if my case is done. You are a true professional 👏🏿

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mohamed aljoujah December 11, 2016 at 10:10 pm

Congratulations

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Jason Dzubow December 12, 2016 at 7:35 am

Thank you for sharing. Your time-line is a bit unusual. Did you expedite or short list the case?

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Dave December 17, 2016 at 9:27 pm

My bad. I meant I was interviewed in April 2016

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Ahmed December 11, 2016 at 9:12 pm

Dear Jason,
Could you please kindly tell me how many days I should renew my EAD before it expires ? Is it 90 days or 180 days ?
My EAD based on asylum case .

Thank you

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mohamed aljoujah December 11, 2016 at 10:11 pm

Salam ahmed you can renew it before 120 days

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Jason Dzubow December 12, 2016 at 7:34 am

You should renew 120 days before it expires. That is the earliest you can renew without risking that USCIS will reject the application. Take care, Jason

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Ahmed December 13, 2016 at 9:23 am

Thank Dear Jason
Thank you Mohamed.
God bless you both

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Izzac December 11, 2016 at 7:17 pm

Dear jason
Thanks for help , i have a Q, the nebraska office recivex my fingerprint for RTD since August 16 2016 till today i didnt get my RTD ? And i think its 3 month till you get the RTD ? What shall i fo sir ?

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Jason Dzubow December 12, 2016 at 7:33 am

I think it normally takes 4 to 5 months, but you can make an inquiry with USCIS to see whether there is a delay. You can find their phone number on their website: http://www.uscis.gov. You can also find a link to make an in-person appointment if you prefer that. Take care, Jason

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Lili December 11, 2016 at 11:49 am

Hi Jason, I have a question please; I’m Syrian married to an Egyptian. I applied for asylum here in the U.S in August 2015 and my case is still pending since then. I haven’t gotten the Egyptian citizenship from my husband and we didn’t register our marriage at the Egyptian embassy as I’m not interested to get the Egyptian citizenship, so I will not get it in the future. Would the fact that I’m married to an Egyptian citizen who could pass his citizenship to me (if we register our marriage at the Embassy) affect my chances to win asylum in the U.S? My husband is on F1 visa status. Thanks a lot for your help!

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Jason Dzubow December 12, 2016 at 7:28 am

As a matter of law, it probably does not. Unless you have received an offer of resettlement in Egypt (or an offer of citizenship from the government), you are not considered “firmly resettled” in Egypt and you are still eligible for asylum in the U.S. However, the asylum officer might consider the fact that you did not try to stay in Egypt as a “discretionary factor,” meaning, it is a reason to deny your case as a matter of discretion. I have never seen a case denied as a matter of discretion for a reason such as yours, so my guess is that it will not affect the case. I do recommend you talk to a lawyer about this, though, as potential status in Egypt could affect your asylum case, and it would be a good idea to look at the specifics of your case (and the specifics of Egyptian citizenship law) to be sure. Take care, Jason

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Lili December 12, 2016 at 8:51 pm

Thank you so much for your time! I really appreciate your help

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K. S. December 10, 2016 at 11:39 pm

Hi jason, first of all I must be thankful to you and your blog. You are the one from whom I got a lot of help for my asylum case. I am going to share my experience hoping that this will be an encouraging story for everyone who is frustrated and I can feel the suffering of everyone because I have also gone through those hard time. Applied for asylum in Arlington.- 11/10/2014. Request to expedite – 03/14/2016. Request to expedite approved. -08/16/2016. Interview scheduled. 09/26/2016. But they postponed it. Rescheduled interview. 10/26/2016. Went to collect decision. 11/10/2016. Received recommended approval Finally , APPROVED!!! 11/22/2016. Thanks everyone and wish you all the best

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Jason Dzubow December 11, 2016 at 8:11 am

Congratulations and thank you for letting us know. Take care, Jason

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kaine December 11, 2016 at 6:34 pm

Dear K.S.
Congratulations ,And thanks for sharing about your case timing.these kind of information are so helpful for others, i hope your success will be continued.

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mohamed aljoujah December 11, 2016 at 7:20 pm

Congratulations
Can you pleas tell me you original contry ?

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Allen December 11, 2016 at 8:01 pm

Big congrats!!!!!!!!!!!!! can you please share your reason for the expedite? Thanks!

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Allen December 11, 2016 at 8:07 pm
Rayn December 9, 2016 at 8:15 pm

Hi, and thank you for your help for us.
I have a question about the Republican Party Platform
Asylum should be limited to cases of political, ethnic or religious persecution” what is going to happy with the people with the LGBTQ
like I have pending case can i move to Canada and apply there if this thing happened ?
thank u

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Jason Dzubow December 11, 2016 at 7:57 am

The platform is just the statement of ideas for the Republican party. To eliminate the “particular social group” category (which includes LGBT asylum seekers) would require a change in the law, and I do not know that such a change is forthcoming. If it happens, maybe Canada would be a good option, but you would have to inquire of a Canadian attorney before you go there. By the way, I am not sure “Q” or Questioning would meet the requirements for a particular social group; maybe, but it is not as clear to me as the others (LGB and T). Take care, Jason

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Frank December 9, 2016 at 5:31 pm

I also please have a question whether the asylum decision will be mailed to the applicant address or the attorney address

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Jason Dzubow December 11, 2016 at 7:46 am

It should be mailed to both. Take care, Jason

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Frank December 9, 2016 at 3:37 pm

I have received EAD to all my family members starting with letter Z and has ctegory A05. But has nothing yet received from the asylum office. I had my interview couple of months. Any thing that might mean please?

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Jason Dzubow December 11, 2016 at 7:45 am

You should contact the asylum office and ask them. You can find their contact info if you follow the link at right called Asylum Office Locator. Normally, A05 is for people whose case was granted, so you should find out what is going on. Take care, Jason

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Mary December 9, 2016 at 10:56 am

Hi Jason,
It seems like asylum scheduling bulletin is not being updated anymore. Do you have any information on that? Is there any other place to see the progress?

Thank you for your great help!

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Jason Dzubow December 11, 2016 at 8:23 am

I know that Arlington is interviewing people from February 2014, but that is the only info I have. I think updating the Bulletin is not a high priority for them, and so that is the reason for the delay. Take care, Jason

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Amit December 8, 2016 at 7:42 pm

Hi Jason, I got my second interview today. It has been 3 months since my interview, whenever I enquired earlier, they replied that they were waiting for background checks. Does it mean that my background checks are complete and should I receive a decision with in time after the second interview.
My second concern is that what does a second interview mean. Is it better that I didn’t get referred to the court. How should I go about it? Please suggest how should I prepare?

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Amit December 8, 2016 at 7:43 pm

Sorry I got the interview notice today scheduled next month.

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mohamed December 9, 2016 at 12:49 am

hi pleas can you tell me witch office you applied and when and how long take with you ??

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XY December 8, 2016 at 6:51 pm

Hi Jason,
Hope you are fine and doing well. Finally Trump won the elections. His first speech after winning was hopeful and somehow a positive change was felt in his words. That was just a night he followed protocols and said what is expected from a president elect of USA, but recently he says many things which rises concerns, not just about immigrants but in a big picture about USA big interests too.
he seems things from his blind eyes, he even don’t know how these small things can effect US big interests in the world and its position as a world power.
About immigration issue, he just count on his plan, but he can’t even imagine how critical this issue is, it is not just about letting immigrants into US or stopping them.
If US stopped immigrants to come in, Trump should know that US is not the end of the world, many other countries would jump to help immigrants. I mean Trump anti- immigration policy is not a big headache for immigrants but it really is a critical issue when it comes to US interests.
Being a world power and home of values is not an free title given to US, it requires sacrifices, accurate diplomacy, spending money, open borders and an open mind. Unfortunately all these things are challenged by Trump.
I still am hopeful and think that once he go in to the white house, the system would change him, else he is gonna make america small.
And thank you Jason for your support.

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Jason Dzubow December 14, 2016 at 7:40 am

I think you should contact the school you want to attend to make sure this will work. I don’t doubt it, but different schools follow different rules, and it would be good to know before you move. Also, moving should not affect your place in the queue. It can cause delay, as it takes months for a case to move from one office to the next. You may have to follow up with the old and new offices to make sure the case moves, and you keep your place in line. Take care, Jason

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Jason Dzubow December 14, 2016 at 7:43 am

Thank you, Jason

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