Answering the Impossible Question

by Jason Dzubow on March 23, 2017

Possibly the most common question I hear at initial consultations with asylum seekers is, “What are the chances that I will win my case?” It’s a reasonable question. People want to know the likelihood of success before they start any endeavor. The problem is, it’s impossible to answer this question. Why is that?

The other Impossible Question: “Does this dress make me look fat?”

One reason is mathematical. Probabilities are tricky to calculate and even more tricky to understand. Also, it is very hard to apply probabilities in a meaningful way to a single event. What does it mean, for example, when the weather report shows a 30% chance of rain? If you run 100 computer simulations of the weather, it will rain 30 times. But in the real world, it will either rain or it won’t. The problem is that we do not have complete information to start with, and that there are too many variables to predict precisely how the weather will evolve over time. Without sufficient information, we have to approximate, and we are left with a range of possible outcomes and probabilities. As Niels Bohr observed, “Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.”

Another difficulty is that predicting case outcomes involves human beings, and we are a notoriously capricious species. At the outset of a case, the lawyer may not know whether the client can get needed evidence, or whether she can remember her testimony, or how a witness will behave. Also, the lawyer may not know who the fact finder will be (with Immigration Court cases, we usually know in advance; for Asylum Office cases, we never know until the day of the interview). Also, what if the fact finder is in a particularly good or bad mood on the day of the case? Or what if she is hungry during the case (one Israeli study famously correlated favorable parole decisions to whether the judge had recently eaten lunch!)? These “human factors” can greatly affect the decision, and few of them can be known in advance, which again makes predicting difficult.

That’s not to say we know nothing about the likelihood of success. For Immigration Court cases, there is data available about the grant rates of individual Judges. Also, there is some data available about Asylum Office grant rates. Of course, all of this is very general and does not necessarily bear much relationship to the likely outcome in a given individual’s case, but I suppose it’s better than nothing.

As a lawyer, once you get a sense for asylum cases, you can at least give the client some idea about the outcome. I can tell a strong case from a weak case, for example. If the client has a lot of credible evidence, has suffered past persecution on account of a protected ground, and faces some likelihood of future harm, the client has a strong case. The most I will say to such a prospective client is that, “If the adjudicator believes that you are telling the truth, you should win your case.” I might also say that since the corroborating evidence is strong, it is likely that the adjudicator will believe the claim.

I do think there is a basic human desire behind the question about the chances for success, and that is the desire for certainty. Asylum cases now take years, and it is very difficult to live your life for so long under the threat of deportation. When the clients ask about the likelihood of success, I know part of what they want is reassurance. Even if the case is weak, they want to feel like they have a chance. They want to feel that what they are building in the U.S. while they wait for a decision will not all be lost. How, then, do we balance the need for certainty with providing an honest evaluation of the case?

For my clients, I try to give them both honesty and hope. In the beginning, I give the client my honest assessment of the case and the likelihood of success. Knowing my assessment (whether it is good or bad), if the client decides to go forward, my focus shifts to creating the strongest case possible with the facts and evidence available, and to helping reassure the clients so they feel some hope. I try to encourage the client to do what is within their power to make the case better: Gather evidence, talk to witnesses, find experts, etc. At least this helps empower the client a bit, and it gives them some agency over their case outcome.

Different lawyers do things differently, and there are probably many “right” ways to balance realism and hope. There are also wrong ways. Any lawyer who “guarantees” you will win an asylum case is a lawyer you should avoid. No lawyer can guarantee a win because we do not make the decisions–the government does. Also, lawyers who make dubious promises (“I am good friends with your Judge, so I can get you a quicker hearing date”) are probably lying to get your business. Be careful, and remember that offers that seem too good to be true probably are. For all its flaws, the American immigration system is largely free from corruption. Lawyers don’t have special relationships with adjudicators that can change outcomes or speed adjudication. When a lawyer oversells hope at the expense of realism, you are safer to seek a different attorney; one who is more interested in telling the truth than in selling you his services.

So when a prospective client asks me the chances for success, I’ll try to give the best evaluation I can, so that the person can make an informed choice about whether to file an asylum case. Once the case is started, I will try to address weakness and gather evidence to maximize the chances for a win. I will also try to encourage the client, so that she has some hope during the long wait.

{ 148 comments… read them below or add one }

Soliman April 26, 2017 at 4:34 am

Hello sir,
I am from Egypt, I applied for Asylum here in USA , and I received my work permit..
I have wife and 3 kids living in Egypt. I do want to see them, can I ?
I mean can I see them before being asylum granted and getting the green card… like short visit or another sponsor who can send them invitation or something like that.. ?

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Jason Dzubow April 28, 2017 at 4:45 pm

You can travel outside the US while you have a pending asylum case, but first you have to get Advance Parole. You can meet them in a third country. If you go to Egypt, it will likely result in your asylum case being denied (or at the minimum, you will need to explain why you returned and you should have a very good reason; even then, it is very likely your case will be denied). You can also try to bring them here, but it is very difficult to get a visa, and it is even more difficult if your immediate relative has a pending asylum case. Finally, you can try to expedite your own asylum case. I wrote about that on March 30, 2017 – maybe that post would help. Take care, Jason

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Soliman April 29, 2017 at 3:19 pm

Thank you a lot sir,
If my asylum case is approved and I get the green card, will it be easy to bring my wife and kids here to USA, and how long does it take to bring them ?
How can I get Advance Parole ?

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Safa April 21, 2017 at 6:20 pm

Hello jason
I have a question for you please
My asylum case is still pending, my work permit and temproray ID expired and I’m still waiting for renewal.
I was wondering if I can travel within the U.S. using my country Passport (Yemen) ?
My travel visa has been expired
I have a family emergency so I was wondering if I can travel on airplane domestically
Thank you so much for taking the time answering our questions

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Jason Dzubow April 25, 2017 at 8:08 am

I think you probably need some sort of valid ID to travel domestically. When you filed to renew the EAD, your old EAD should automatically be extended for 180 days, and you can probably use that extension to go to the DMV and extend your driver’s license. Then you can use the license to travel domestically. If you cannot do that, call the airline to ask whether you can travel domestically with an expired passport. Take care, Jason

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David April 20, 2017 at 5:28 am

My asylum court case was adjourned because my barrister was sick, am I suppose to pay for the new barrister for my adjourned hearing?
Kind regards
David

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Jason Dzubow April 20, 2017 at 6:35 am

I am in the US, and it sounds like you are in a different country, and so I do not know the rules where you are. Take care, Jason

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Corina April 15, 2017 at 8:40 pm

Hi Jason , I came to the United States in 2012 with a j1 work visa and applied for asylum shortly after because of the country conditions and phosycal harm I have experienced in my home home country . However 5 years ago my English was not great , I did not have any money to hire a lawyer so I just filed myself because I was terrified to go back . I did not know how to prepare a case and I always thought that if further evidence was necessary I would receive a letter to submitt more . My asylum interview is soon i have been waiting for this for 5 years but it’s still a scary thought that my case will be declined . In fact I am going with a lawyer to the interview and she said the chances of approval are very slim because I didn’t file the case right . Do you think there is any hope of appeal if I get denied or to ask to be able to submit more evidence ? Thank you

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Corina April 15, 2017 at 8:45 pm

Also I am not married nor do I have any us born children and from I read online this last month usualy people like me do not stand a chance . I am at the end of my powers I don’t know what to do anymore , I am trying to stay calm but I keep having panic attacks of fear that I will denied and deported on the spot .

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Jason Dzubow April 16, 2017 at 8:48 am

Even if you lose your case, you will not be detained and deported on the spot. You will have to see an Immigration Judge and you can present your case again to the Judge. If you lose, then you will be ordered deported, though you can still appeal. So in other words, there is no danger that you will be deported in the immediate future. However, as I mentioned, you should do your best to fix your asylum case and try to win it now. And if your lawyer is not helping, find a new lawyer. Take care, Jason

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Jason Dzubow April 16, 2017 at 8:06 am

If you have a lawyer, she should tell you what evidence you need for your case, so you can try to get it. Also, she should help you make corrections to your case and submit that before the interview (in accordance with the asylum office rules). It is certainly possible to correct errors prior to an interview – we have done that for many people. In addition, before the interview she should practice with you, so you know what to expect. And then she can attend the interview with you, but since the lawyer’s role at the interview is very limited, this is the least important thing she will do for you.If she is not doing all these things, she is not really doing her job or helping you, and maybe you need to talk to her or – if she is not helping – find a lawyer who will help you. Take care, Jason

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Corina April 16, 2017 at 10:13 am

I received my interview notice a week ago , I did not have a lawyer prior to this . My interview is on the 24th and I did bring up all the points you made with her in an email and I am just waiting for an answer . I don’t know the office regulations and if they allow documents to be submitted before the interview , my case was filed in California and the interview will take place in Anaheim . In my initial conversation with her she did mention that since I didn’t submitt any evidence when I first filed it is likely that I will get declined and I get this fact , I didn’t know how to file this case or what was required from me at the time . She also did say that she will go to the interview with me and ask for more time to build a stronger case with more evidence .
I know that the outcome of an asylum interview depends on many factors but I feel like I am already going into this to lose . The lawyer didn’t make any promises , which I guess is good , she just said that she will help with asking for an extension and build a better case or in the case the extension is denied she said there are alleys and avenues to appeal , whatever that means . I am trying to keep my head up but it’s getting harder and harder .

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Jason Dzubow April 16, 2017 at 11:39 am

In my office, documents must be submitted one week in advance, so if it is the same there, you are basically out of time. Maybe you can ask the lawyer if it is possible to contact the asylum office in advance (like tomorrow) and ask to postpone the interview (or maybe she already tried this). Even if you had a few more weeks, it might be enough for you to make the case stronger, which could result in a better outcome. Good luck, Jason

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Nano April 12, 2017 at 3:14 pm

This Is a very appropriate article because for a moment I have the need to ask you. ” Today was my interview, the official was so nice didn’t ask me anything in a bad mood or in a bad way at the beginning she said I have a good proof, but at final she said in case I have deportation this can be stopped because I’m married to a citizen”. What I can expect it. Approval or no?
I don’t trust always in a kind people but I have a good feeling.
I’ll let you know everybody. I have to back in two weeks.

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Jason Dzubow April 12, 2017 at 3:38 pm

It sounds positive. Good luck, Jason

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Tapiwa April 11, 2017 at 12:48 pm

Hello Jason my friend has been working without EAD wile awaiting her asylum pending case. is it safe for her to apply for EAD? will they see that she has been working all along? will this affect her case? Thank you

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Sally April 10, 2017 at 12:12 am

Hi Jason, I really appreciate ur care and kindness, I don’t really know how to express my gratitude, I have a question, me and my sister live in Atlanta, we applied for asylum from there, it has been almost two years since we have applied, we got the work permit but since then didn’t get anything about the interview, now we are thinking about transferring our case to san fransisco as most of our friends suggested, I want to know what do u think? Is it better to do so?!! Will that make things go a little bit faster? Thank u again for all what u did and all what u r still doing.

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Jason Dzubow April 12, 2017 at 1:33 pm

You can check the Asylum Office Scheduling Bulletin (a link is at right) to get an idea of the wait time in the different offices. Atlanta is a sub-office of Arlington, so it is slower than Arlington, but I do not know who is currently being scheduled there. I wrote a post about this topic on February 25, 2016 that might be helpful. One issue with Atlanta is that if your case is denied there, and you go to court, the court is very tough, and it is a bad idea to have a court case in Atlanta. This only applies to court and not to the asylum office, but I suppose it is something to consider. Take care, Jason

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Sally April 16, 2017 at 12:05 pm

Thank you so much for ur answer, what do we need to transfer the case to San Fransisco? Do we have to open a bank account and get an ID or Driver’s license? Thank u soo much, God bless u.

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Jason Dzubow April 16, 2017 at 9:52 pm

If you live in the jurisdiction of the SF office, you can file a change of address form (AR-11, available at http://www.uscis.gov) with your current asylum office and the case will be moved to the new office. Take care, Jason

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Rm April 9, 2017 at 10:44 pm

Hi Jason!!! Thank you for helping us.

Last week I have received fingerprint letter from uscis. And I’m waiting for my interview almost 3 years (applied on May 2014 from Chicago office). Is that means that I will be scheduled for interview soon? Thanks

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Jason Dzubow April 12, 2017 at 1:30 pm

Not necessarily – the fingerprint appointments are not always related to interview appointments. If you check the Asylum Office Scheduling Bulletin (a link is at right), you can get an idea of who is currently being interviewed at your asylum office. Take care, Jason

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Fadhl April 9, 2017 at 5:29 pm

Hi Jason,
Is it against me if the judge ask me: Did you come to the USA to seek asylum? So, Why you have B2 visa. Is it fraud?

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Jason Dzubow April 10, 2017 at 3:33 pm

It is a potential issue. A case called Matter of Pula addresses this issue and basically says that if an asylum seeker lies to get a visa, she is not automatically barred from asylum. So under that case, you are probably ok, but if you have a lawyer, certainly you might want to address the questions. Take care, Jason

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Paul April 6, 2017 at 10:30 pm

Hi, Jazon. I’m seeking asylum, my application is pending. But, I have a concern: I left my country in 2010 because of security issues and I never got there again. Once I left my country, I’ve been living in another country for 4years, and then, I got another country where I’ve been living for 2years. Actually, I’m in the United States since May 2016. Do you think that my asylum case has a chance to succeed, in view of, I was resettled in others countries? Thanks so much.

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Jason Dzubow April 7, 2017 at 10:19 am

If you had an offer of permanent status to live in one of the other countries, you might be barred from asylum based on “firm resettlement.” The analysis for that can be tricky and I recommend you talk to a lawyer to help you evaluate the case. Also, if you have been here since May 2016 and have not yet filed for asylum, you should file as soon as possible. With a few exceptions, people are required to file for asylum within one year of arriving in the US and if not, their application can be automatically denied. Take care, Jason

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Paul April 7, 2017 at 10:40 am

What do you mean by: ”If you had an offer of permanent status to live in one of the other countries”?

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Jason Dzubow April 7, 2017 at 2:35 pm

That the third country has offered you the right to live there permanently. Maybe they offered citizenship or some other type of status. Again, this can be a complicated analysis and you might want to hire a lawyer to help you with the specifics of your case. Take care, Jason

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Paul April 7, 2017 at 4:03 pm

Alright. Copy that. I got you. So, is it possible to work with you? actually, I’m living Kentucky, and I notice that you live Washington, or it’s better to work with an attorney who is located in the same city than me?

gunjan April 6, 2017 at 9:22 pm

hi jason, I have applied for an asylum on 31st October 2016, since I didn’t received anything from officials. I didn’t got any letter for fingerprints or they didn’t returnd my application. nothing. than I called on helpline number, they replied to write a letter to the asylum office. and I wrote, but this time the same position, no reply from asylum office. right now I am residing at same address from where I applied. and it’s 150 days are over, should I apply for EAD with the receipt of USPS mail of application for asylum. is worth?

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Jason Dzubow April 7, 2017 at 10:09 am

If you have not received even a receipt for the asylum, something is wrong. Try emailing or calling or going in person to the local asylum office to ask about your case. You can find their contact info if you follow the link at right called Asylum Office Locator. Also, you can try to get a copy of the filed application by filing a form G-639, available at http://www.uscis.gov, but this will take several months. If you cannot get an answer from the local office, you may want to re-file the asylum case. Make sure that you have the correct filing address (which varies depending on where in the US you live). The concern is that you will miss the one-year filing deadline for asylum. At this point, I would also recommend you get a lawyer to help you with the case. As for the work permit, you can try to apply for it, but without the asylum receipt, I doubt it will work (but the first EAD application is free, so there is not much to lose by trying). Take care, Jason

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Fadhl April 6, 2017 at 9:03 pm

Hi Jason,
If I applied for UNHCR in Jordan before I came to the USA, is that consider as asylum bars?
My family now in Jordan also are registered with the UNHCR, is this hurt my case?
My case now in the court.
REgards

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Jason Dzubow April 7, 2017 at 10:06 am

It depends on whether you received an offer of permanent status in Jordan or another country. If so, you could be barred from asylum based on “firm resettlement.” The analysis for this can be a bit complicated, and if your case is in court, you should have a lawyer to help you, and the lawyer can also look at this issue. Take care, Jason

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Dose see April 5, 2017 at 3:03 pm

Hi Jason,
I just want to know, when I’m going to the interview do I have to submit my tax documents, or should I wait unit the officer asks about it?

Thanks!!

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Jason Dzubow April 7, 2017 at 6:13 am

We normally do not submit tax documents for our clients. If you want to submit them, you probably should do that before the interview, in accordance with your local asylum office rules. If you need the rules on submitting documents, contact the asylum office. You can find their contact info if you follow the link at right called Asylum Office Locator. Take care, Jason

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alex March 30, 2017 at 3:29 pm

hi jason thank you for your help for all asylum seekers ,l have a question regarding the 180 day extension of the pending AED card ,if you didn’t get your new card before the old one expire can you use the receipt from USCIS as a work permit to fill the gap in your company, and can the MDV consider that to extend your driving licence till you get the new AED .

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alex March 30, 2017 at 3:28 pm

hi jason thank you for your appreciated help for all asylum seekers ,l have a question regarding the 180 day extension of the pending AED card ,if you didn’t get your new card before the old one expire can you use the receipt from USCIS as a work permit to fill the gap in your company, and can the MDV consider that to extend your driving licence till you get the new AED .

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Jason Dzubow March 31, 2017 at 6:30 am

The receipt is an automatic extension and it should allow you to work and extend the DL. I wrote about that on January 25, 2017 and provided some relevant links. Maybe that would help. Take care, Jason

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NZ April 7, 2017 at 8:06 pm

Hi Jason,

Is 180 days extension for all I 765 application? I want to know if renewal under category c (8) is one of them?

Thank you.

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Jason Dzubow April 9, 2017 at 8:20 am

It is not for all categories – I did a post on January 25, 2017 where I provided a link, which lists the categories. Take care, Jason

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Alex March 30, 2017 at 4:44 am

Hi Jason,
My case pending since 2015 in SF office.
My first lawyer sent asylum application before 1st year of presence, but she didn’t ask me to sing that form in one place. The form was returned 3 days before one year presence and was accepted two weeks later. I requested all documents USCIS has on file, initial acceptance date was 23rd of July. After that that change it to 21 of august. Would immigration officer consider my case as filed after one year deadline and refer my documents directly to the immigration court, or might give me a chance to pass the asylum interview! Thanks.

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Jason Dzubow March 30, 2017 at 6:31 am

I do not have the regulations memorized, but they clearly cover your situation – if you file within one year and the case is returned for an error, and then you re-file, you get to keep the first filing date. So in other words, you should not have a problem with the one year bar. If you have a new lawyer, it might be a good idea to look up the regulations and bring them to the asylum office (you might also find this in the Affirmative Asylum Procedures Manual – a link is at right). Take care, Jason

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Alex March 30, 2017 at 2:02 pm

Thanks, I just found on uscis website

defect in first submission
The I-589 was mailed within one year of the last arrival, but the USCIS Service Center returned it as improperly filed. It was subsequently refiled more than one year after the arrival. In cases such as this, the applicant is presumed to have attempted a timely request for protection with USCIS. The application will not be referred on the basis of the one-year filing deadline, provided the applicant refiles within a reasonable period of time from the date the application was returned by the Service Center. Note: The file must always be thoroughly checked to ensure that correspondence to an applicant from the Service Center is not overlooked.

https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/USCIS/Humanitarian/Refugees%20%26%20Asylum/Asylum/AOBTC%20Lesson%20Plans/One-Year-Filing-Deadline-31aug10.pdf

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Jason Dzubow March 31, 2017 at 6:19 am

Very good. You should make sure to include a copy of your returned application and note for them that it was filed prior to the one-year bar. Even though they may have this info somewhere in their file, it is best to give it to them again and point it out, as it is your responsibility to show that you filed on time. Take care, Jason

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Hmong Bong March 29, 2017 at 5:10 pm

Hi Jason, is it true that now even detainees who won asylum in detention can now be detained, pending an appeal? My friend from a neighboring country had that happen to him: http://www.todayonline.com/singapore/amos-remains-detained-us-despite-being-granted-asylum.

Also, I’ve heard incredible rumors that DHS can now arrest asylum seekers at court right after their individual hearing has failed, even though they’ve been paroled. Can you confirm or dispel these rumors? Thanks!

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Jason Dzubow March 30, 2017 at 6:24 am

It is normal that a detained asylum seeker remains detained if they win their case but if the DHS attorney appeals. That is nothing new. The asylum grant is not a final order as long as the appeal is pending, and so technically, they have not yet been granted asylum. As for people being arrested outside immigration court, I have not heard about that. Apparently, ICE is arresting some people outside other courts (criminal court) in some places, but I have not heard about it happening outside immigration courts. We are keeping an eye out for this though, and if I hear about it, I will try to post something about it here, and I expect it will also be in the news in general. Take care, Jason

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gopal c das March 29, 2017 at 4:05 pm

hi sir..thank you for your kind helping ppl like us…i hava a Q. most of the time we use to speak with our home country relative.via skypee/ viber/ messenger or cell phone.is it any negative side when we face interview….

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Jason Dzubow March 30, 2017 at 6:19 am

I do not see why that would affect your case, but I do not know the facts of your case, so it is difficult to answer. Take care, Jason

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Rick March 29, 2017 at 1:46 pm

Hi Jason,
Thank you for all your effort keeping us posted these days! It has been incredibly helpful just having some source of reflection on the US immigration policy.
As many others who reads this blog, I have a question to ask. Would that be illegal for an asylee to apply for their passport at the embassy of the country they seek asylum from? I could not find any clear answer to that on the asylee’s brochure. Thank you!

Take care,

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Jason Dzubow March 30, 2017 at 6:18 am

It is not illegal, but it could create problems for your asylum case. You may need to explain why you got a passport from the government if you fear persecution from that government (if you fear a terrorist group, for example, and not the government of your country, this will be easier to explain). If you can avoid getting the passport, it is probably better, but we have had clients do it and still win their cases. Take care, Jason

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May March 30, 2017 at 2:34 pm

My husband had to renew his passport because the school demanded the valid passport copy (I don’t remember for what purpose). I guess if you have a reason why you need it and can prove it, you should be fine.

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Jason Dzubow March 31, 2017 at 6:24 am

There is no guarantee that it will be fine, but that sounds like a good reason, and I suspect that it will not cause problems for his asylum case. He may want to have proof that the school required a valid passport (like a letter from the school). Take care, Jason

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arman March 29, 2017 at 10:33 am

Hi Dear Jason,
USCIS told me my initial EAD card is under production. How long it takes to receive my card?

thanks.

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Adie March 29, 2017 at 12:37 pm

Hello Aman, are you originally from pak?

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Jason Dzubow March 30, 2017 at 6:34 am

When people get that notice, they usually receive the card in less than one month. Take care, Jason

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Mac maple March 29, 2017 at 10:18 am

Hello Jason
I have been reading this blog,it s interesting especially for me as asylum seeker.Thank you for this idea of helping people.
I submitted my case it ‘s been four months.I ll been moving to another states with different jurisdiction. Can moving before I get my EAD make difficulty or slow the process of getting work permit. I am in a situation that I have to move within a week.I am afraid that my EAD application could be slowed because of the move.
Thank you

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Jason Dzubow March 30, 2017 at 6:34 am

The old policy was that if you moved and changed asylum offices, it would “stop the clock” and you would not get an EAD. The system changed some time ago, and so if you move, it should not affect the EAD. I just do not have complete confidence that everyone at USCIS understands the new rule. You should be fine, but if there is a problem, you may have to contact USCIS and speak to them to correct the problem. Take care, Jason

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Fr March 28, 2017 at 8:49 pm

Hi Jason

Can I add more supporting documents about my case after I finish interview, if yes how should I do?
Thanks

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Jason Dzubow March 29, 2017 at 6:35 am

You can try. Typically, they are dropped off in-person or mailed, but sometimes, they can be emailed or faxed (if there are not so many documents). You can find the asylum office contact info/email if you follow the link at right called Asylum Office Locator. Make sure to put your name and Alien number on the documents, so they can be matched with your case. Take care, Jason

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Fr March 29, 2017 at 12:47 pm

Thanks

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Brad March 28, 2017 at 4:33 pm

Dear Jason
Greetings to you
I’ve some questions about returning home country while having a pending asylum case.
If someone has very emergency.. like someone is sick and just want to see him secretly, can he go back back fir a while.
What does immigration do on the passport when they are exit. Do they cancel the visa or any other stamp.
What are the chances to come back to United States if a person has a valid visa.

Blessings to you

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Jason Dzubow March 29, 2017 at 6:26 am

You can go back, if you have Advance Parole (form I-131, available at http://www.uscis.gov) to re-enter the US. However, if you return to your country, it will very likely cause you to lose your asylum case. At the minimum, you will need to explain why you returned, and how you stayed safe during the return trip. My guess, however, is that your case will be denied if you return to your home country and then you will have to try again with a judge. If you do not have AP, I do not know whether you will be able to return just with your visa. If you get here, you could be stopped at the airport and detained, and them either return home or present your asylum case to a judge, probably while in detention (and with the added handicap of having returned to your country, which makes it more likely the case will be denied). Take care, Jason

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Jimi March 28, 2017 at 1:33 am

Hi Jason, I’m completely agreed with you, let me tell you my attorney story, I got to know about her through my friend and recently she lost her case with the same attorney, whatever every case is different, my lawyer told me my case is good case and I have good chances to win and she has good connection with officers in New York office (that was second lie) she ask me to submit full fee before submitting case which I did, making long story short, before hiring any attorney client should consult with different attornies as much as he can and research about that attorney because every attorney will inform you they have more than 95% success rate and that the strong lie, tomorrow I suppose to go for interview and my attorney was busy to handle other cases so I decided to reschedule my case till today she didn’t submit rescheduling request so first thing I will do to change the attorney because I know with my failure I’m the only one who will suffer attorney had 0 loss.

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XY March 28, 2017 at 2:23 am

Same here. I am in San Francisco. Two years ago when I applied to Asylu, my athorney told me that I have full chance to win, I knew that I had/have. Last when when I received the interview notice, I went to my attorney office, and my real attorney was not there to help and there was another attorney. I said that is fine and I even did not ask or argue that where was my real attorney. I started working with the new. He was not experienced, but still I said that is fine because my case looked highly evidence based and I did not have any story or long testimony…
Anyway, we prepared all the documents and submitted to the asylum office and last week was my interview which I could not attend because of traffic jam, I was 20 minutes late to the asylum office and they rescheduled my interview.
I was so sad for my reschedule, look what happened then, I opened my documents and said lets review it till the next interview date. I found out almost three main questions on my documents which I am sure I would have faced in the interview. I did not had any clear answer for the question, and those question are so important to establish credible fear, so think if I was in interview and asylum officer asked me those question??? My attorney never told me about those questions and I am not sure if he read my case or not
I thanked god for the rescheduling the interview.
I wrote this story, just to let know all the asylum seekers to be very careful in choosing attorneys. If you are living close to Washington, go with Jason. Each of us came long way, and very simple mistake can slow down or even put in trouble our cases, so to avoid such mistakes, having experienced attorney is very much important. And dont underestimate the role of attorney, my case looks so simple and easy to win, but as I look deep to it, I find many things in it.
The below link can help you to know how your case is analysed by asylum offices and what sort of question you would face in interviews, it helped me too much.

https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/USCIS/About%20Us/Directorates%20and%20Program%20Offices/RAIO/Well%20Founded%20Fear%20LP%20(RAIO).pdf

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Jimi March 28, 2017 at 3:41 am

Thank you so much XY, you can’t understand my situation I’m in NY it’s 4AM I can’t sleep because of my attorney foolishness, I’m going to reschedule my interview an defiantly will go to Jason otherwise I’ll fight my own case as I’m fighting with religious group at home country, fight is my fate I believe.

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Jason Dzubow March 28, 2017 at 6:35 am

It is better to do a case yourself than to use an attorney who is not good (of course, speaking as an attorney, a good lawyer can help you win your case!). Take care, Jason

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Jason Dzubow March 28, 2017 at 6:34 am

Thank you for the comment. Hopefully, you will be rescheduled soon, but it sound like the delay may have been a blessing in disguise. Take care, Jason

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Jimi March 28, 2017 at 12:46 pm
Ring John March 30, 2017 at 12:35 am

Jason Dzubow,Do you have any trusted colleague in Asia,India? I am going to fight my case all alone pray for me….Dear Xy, please send me those documents to my above mentioned email too

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Jason Dzubow March 30, 2017 at 6:27 am

I do not – sorry, Jason

Jason Dzubow March 28, 2017 at 6:28 am

Thank you for sharing this,. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to tell a good attorney from a bad attorney, especially based on the initial meeting. Take care, Jason

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sol March 27, 2017 at 10:45 pm

Hey jason
My case has been pending in the court for 4 years and i have to wait for my individual hearing for about 8 more months ( Hoping it won’t be postponed again). My case had been postponed twice ( Both not my fault , common occurrence in the Baltimore court ). My current girl friend wants to get married ( US citizen ) but i fear it will complicate my case . Who is the ultimate decision maker in such cases the USCIS or the judge ?
2. Will this aid me get a work permit ? ( my clock stopped and didn’t have a work permit all those years )
3. How complicated is the process ? ( the whole process of getting married to a US citizen while you are in defensive asylum )
4. My biggest fear than not getting the asylum is extending the case. ( All these years without a work permit is tough )
And I am hoping this December is my final individual hearing. Is it foolish taking a chance on the asylum hearing only ?
I have a lawyer but i would really appreciate if you give the rough outline of the process and chances of getting it right if came across such cases before.
Thanks

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Jason Dzubow March 28, 2017 at 6:25 am

1 – If you marry a US citizen, she files an I-130 for you. USCIS decides that portion of the case. Once that is done, the Judge decides about the green card (or terminates proceedings so USCIS can decide about the GC). 2 – You could file the I-485 and the I-765 in order to get the work permit, but this can be tricky when you have a court case, so you should talk to a lawyer about that. Also, if the case has been rescheduled by the court, the clock may have re-started, so you might be eligible for a work permit now. 3 – There are several bureaucratic steps, and a lawyer can help with the process. 4 – Baltimore has been moving cases around a lot, especially since the Trump Administration has new priorities in how they process cases, so it is possible your case will move again, but hopefully not. Whether you rely only on asylum is up to you. Even if you lose, you can still do the marriage case while your asylum is on appeal, but here again, a lawyer would be helpful, as you do not want to mess that up and ruin your chances of getting the GC. Take care, Jason

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sol March 29, 2017 at 11:09 am

Thanks

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Alberth March 27, 2017 at 7:22 pm

Hey Jason how are you ?
I’ve a question , I applied for asylum in January 2017 I received blue telegram confirmation , but actually I am waiting for firgerprints 2 for moths its that normal ? I heard that people get fingerprints a month after!

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Jason Dzubow March 28, 2017 at 6:18 am

Wait another month and maybe you will get it. If not, contact the local asylum office and ask them about it. You can find their contact info if you follow the link at right called Asylum Office Locator. Take care, Jason

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Erika March 28, 2017 at 10:53 am

Hi Albert, call your local office that happen to
Me. I called them on Friday they are going to send all notices again since there was an issue with delivering to my address . I went to my usps mail to find out why the letter were not delivered and the customer service rep from asylum office told me all letterswere send back in January. Now I’m waiting for the finger print notice . Good luck .

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Fr March 27, 2017 at 6:17 pm

Hi Dear Jason

I have qustion I had interview and the officer told me i need give her my military card that I have and after that he give us his decision, my qustion is if he insist to my military card , it means he wants to give us approval or it is part of the routine process that without that card he can not give us her decision?
Is it a good sign?

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Fr March 27, 2017 at 6:44 pm

I didn’t go to military because of my health issue and i m on one of those 6 countries

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 6:45 pm

It is part of the routine process. Also, we have seen people who get a second interview after they give their military documents, so you need to remain patient, as it may take some time before you get a decision. Take care, Jason

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Jk March 28, 2017 at 12:33 am

Were you in Mavni program ?

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Jk March 28, 2017 at 12:35 am

Were you going to join Army through mavni program ?

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Mary March 27, 2017 at 12:38 pm

Hello again Jason,
I had my interviw on January 5th, 2017 and I still did not received my decision, I’m waiting almost 3 months. I went to USCIS to ask about my case and they said that they are waiting for FBI check, after that they will mail me the decision.
So what that suppose to mean, and how long it takes to them to check whatever they check?
Thank you.

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 6:35 pm

It is not predictable. Some people get a decision in a few days; other people wait years. Usually women are faster than men, and people from Muslim countries tend to wait longer. If you do not have a decision after a few more months, you can contact the asylum office to ask about your case. You can find their contact info/email if you follow the link at right called Asylum Office Locator. Take care, Jason

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arman March 27, 2017 at 12:33 pm

Hi Jason,
I hear that people receive their EAD cards in 20 days, 40 days, or fewer days in other service centers specially Texas. But in my case it is around 90 days that I have received nothing. My case is in Boston sub office and they sent my EAD file to Nebraska’s office. Even after sending my case to Nebraska I have no clues what is going on??. I called and they told me it is better to call after 90 days passed!!!. Why is that??

Thanks.

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arman March 27, 2017 at 12:36 pm

I forgot to say I am waiting for my initial EAD card based on asylum. Also, I have done my interview and I am waiting for the decision. Do you know how long normally it takes to receive the decision?. The officer told me from 3 months to 1 year but I know cases they received the decision in 2 weeks or some even after 2.5 year have not heard of anything.

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Rain March 27, 2017 at 4:02 pm

Hi Arman,

Can you tell me when your asylum application was received at USCIS? I just moved to Boston and I want to know how long it will take.

As to answer your question, I’ve read Jason’s responses from before and the response time is really unpredictable. Some people receive it sooner than others but good luck!

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 6:39 pm

The response time is unpredictable, but apparently, I am very predictable. I will try to think of something more creative to say…

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Rain March 27, 2017 at 6:55 pm

Sorry if I seemed pretentious, I actually meant it in a positive way because I learned a lot just from reading your comments and blogs, of course.

Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 6:33 pm

It is very unpredictable. If you do not have a decision after a few months, you can contact the asylum office to ask about your case. You can find their contact info if you follow the link at right called Asylum Office Locator. Take care, Jason

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Ali March 28, 2017 at 1:18 am

You said my inital EAD card. How did you get interview so fast? Because I understand that you applied asylum 8 months ago. Could you tell me please when you applied for asylum. Because I will go to Canada to apply for asylum because of long waiting process.

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Tanvir Uddin March 29, 2017 at 12:31 am

Hi Arman,

Just a question? was your interview scheduled within few months after sending i-589? I know people have been waiting around 2 years for backlog to get an interview date? Can you please share with us?

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 6:33 pm

We see people take up to 4 months to get the EAD. I think there is not much you can do to expedite it. You can call. If you do not have it after 120 days (or 90 days, or however long you want to wait), you can contact the USCIS Ombudsman – a link is at right. But they will likely not assist you until a certain period of time has passed. Take care, Jason

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arman March 29, 2017 at 7:48 am

As I understood some people wait for years before interview and they receive the decision in some months but some people like me do the interview early but have to wait years for the decision. This is what I heard of from different people. So at the end of the day it is not important when you do the interview because the time frame is almost the same for everyone. We have to wait for years!!

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Jason Dzubow March 30, 2017 at 6:12 am

Everyone waits prior to the interview (except special categories of people like unaccompanied minors or people who are able to expedite). After the interview, some people wait a long time (usually people from majority Muslim countries) and others wait a short time. Take care, Jason

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AM March 27, 2017 at 3:29 am

Dear Jason,

Thanks a lot for these great efforts.
My wife applied for Asylum 30 days ago and I am a dependent on her application currently, we are residing in USA as pending asylum applicants (out of status)

I have a LLC company in USA and I want to start a business and I will hire a director to run the company as I don’t have EAD yet.
Is it legal to do so, or will that affect her case in any way or when we change our status later to green card holders or US citizens ?
Thank you..

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 10:58 am

You cannot work for money in the US without permission, but if you do that, it should not affect your asylum case (or your wife’s case). I do not know whether there is any problem with you owning a company. Whether you can get your GC based on the company depends on many factors, and you would need to talk to a lawyer about that. Take care, Jason

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John March 27, 2017 at 1:24 am

Hello Jason,

I do apprecate your hard work for helping asylum seekers.

I have a question in regards to Asylee’s travel document.
I have been granted as an asylee last year, by end of October 2016 I applied for travel document which is currently pending and I didn’t receive it so far. In recent days I applied for Green Card through asylee’s right after 1 year grant of asylum.

My queetion is, if I get my travel document and got my green card, can I travel with my travel document which expires in one year or do I need to apply for permanent residence re-entry permit?
Please advice.

Best Regards,
John

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 10:56 am

You can use the Refugee Travel Document to travel – it is better than using your passport, since you received asylum from your home country and it sometimes causes problems for asylees to travel using their home-country passport. Take care, Jason

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Elyas March 27, 2017 at 12:04 am

Dear Jason!

Im a pending asylum in Virginia I have a question

If i marry a canadian citizens im sure she can come here as a visit can she stay here for long time! Can she work here?

Or if i marry a new zealand citizen she always come to US for a visit can she live with me here? And we marry in court in USA and what if i would wanted to go in either country can i travel with my current status which is pending?

Regars

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 10:55 am

If you want to travel and return to the US, you need Advance Parole, form I-131, available at http://www.uscis.gov. If you are married to a citizen of Canada or NZ and you travel to the country, the asylum office may wonder why you did not seek residency in that country based on the marriage. You may need to explain that as part of your case. If your spouse comes to the US, they can potentially join your asylum case and stay here that way, if you are married. Or they can find some other way to stay here on their own. Take care, Jason

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Sel March 26, 2017 at 3:08 pm

Dear Jason

My husband was approved 3 years ago and he got his green card 2 years ago me and my kids moved to the US 1 and half years ago I was planning to travel to my country this summer to see my family with my kids I haven’t got my green card but I have an EAD and socal security since my husband applied for asylum can I go to my home country and get back with no troubles

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 10:49 am

It depends on the case. I recommend you talk to a lawyer about that before you go. If your return trip causes the US government to think that the original asylum case was fake, that will be a problem. Also, the Trump Administration is unpredictable, and it is better to be cautious. Take care, Jason

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Simon Tesfay March 26, 2017 at 3:03 pm

Dear

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Stonal March 25, 2017 at 11:23 am

Hello Jason thx for the great work,
Wana inquire sm1 wants people in my story want to write letters as my evidence so askin is the letter with a signature only okay o it nids mo thingz like a notary o signatures frm lawyers back in my country like a form of confirmation.
Thanks again for all the hlp

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 6:37 am

I did a posting about this on August 16, 2012 that may help. We usually get a signed letter and a copy of the photo ID (usually, they scan and email the letter; we usually do not have the original). Take care, Jason

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Richard March 25, 2017 at 9:29 am

Hello,

I sent my initial EAD application based on asylum pending in NY exactly at 150 days after USCIS received my application. My question is, has anyone or does anyone know if I’ll get any sort of confirmation by them in the following days or do I have to wait until after the 180 days to get any updates?

Thanks,

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Faruk March 25, 2017 at 11:35 am

You will get a confirm of action letter in the mail. Then nothing happens until 180 days have passed.

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 6:36 am

You may get the receipt before 180 days – typically, the receipt takes 2 to 4 weeks, and the EAD itself takes 2 to 4 months. Take care, Jason

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Nr March 25, 2017 at 1:20 am

I asked u before abt my visit visa what are my chances to get visit visa for USA as my halusbnd is in USA from last few years nw he got his workpermit n social security n he is paying tax also but Asylee case is still pending he can’t travel to his hom country sir plz help me out now if apply on these basis if there any chance I can get visit visa fr me or my son ?? I hv no financial problem I can support me my self plz help me out shd I go ahead for it or shd I wait more years till his case desisio n??

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Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 6:31 am

If your husband has filed for asylum, it likely will make it more difficult for you to get certain types of visas, like a visitor (B) visa. You can always hire a lawyer to assist with the non-immigrant visa process; maybe a lawyer could help maximize the chances that you will get a visa. Take care, Jason

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Nr March 28, 2017 at 6:44 am

Sir do I hav another option till my husband asylum case decision coz I have no lawyer I was going to apply for visa on truth basis tht I am Asylee wife who is already waiting for his case me and my son wants to meet him if Asylee can file for his family. During this Tim period thn plz help me out act now m asking for impossible plz help me out Wht shd I do nw ???

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Jason Dzubow March 29, 2017 at 6:08 am

Normally, applying for a B visa is more difficult if your spouse has a pending asylum case. If the embassy thinks you will violate your B visa by staying in the US and joining your husband’s case, they probably will deny the visa. Some other visas are not affected by a spouse’s asylum case – H1b or L, if you qualify for one of those, his case should not affect your ability to get it. Also, he can probably travel and meet you in a third country if he gets Advance Parole, form I-131, available at http://www.uscis.gov. Good luck, Jason

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Nr March 29, 2017 at 7:22 am

Thx a lot for ur guidance

Cris March 24, 2017 at 12:31 pm

Good day Jason! God bless you for doing an exellent job in helping a lot of people. I applied for asylum in September 2015. Got my EAD in May 2016. Filed for renewal in January 2017. Until now it’s under process. My question is, how long will I have to wait before I get interviewed? My case is in California. Thank you very much and God bless you.

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Jason Dzubow March 24, 2017 at 12:32 pm

EAD renewals usually take 2 to 4 months. As for the interview, no one knows how long that will take. You can get some idea if you check the Asylum Office Scheduling Bulletin, a link is at right. Take care, Jason

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Cris March 24, 2017 at 9:08 pm

Thank you Sir.

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Hmong Bong March 24, 2017 at 7:10 am

Hi Jason, I had what I thought was a good case, until I went before my judge for my individual hearing. I was a blogger imprisoned for insulting Islam; with my I-589, my attorney filed tons of media articles proving my case.

During the hearing, however, the DHS attorney dredged up a whole load of other information on me to paint me as an uncredible applicant for asylum. I had tons of dirt of me online (I’m sort of like the Milo Yiannopoulos of my country), including the fact that I did a sex tape back in my country and posted other controversial material on my government from the US, culminating in the argument that I had no “subjective fear.” I also did something idiotic in my earlier days in the US, telling one BBC World Service journalist how I “checkmated” my government by making my asylum case stronger the more they tried to pursue me, which I could engineer from my side by posting more controversial materials online. This was brought up in my individual hearing.

Fortunately, the judge largely brushed those aside, stating that “yeah, well there was already stuff happening before he did all that new stuff here in the US.” He, however, demanded to see my official charge sheet and arrest warrant back in my country, which wasn’t filed with my I-589. Honestly I blame my attorney for not even knowing that it’s a possibility that the judge might insist on it; he thought that a CNN/Associated Press article would convince the judge right away, which wasn’t the case.

All the talk about the “sex tape” led to the judge thinking of the possibility that I was charged with posting a sex tape instead of insulting Islam (I wasn’t, apparently now even a Fox news article on my case is fake news). He said, “I think it’s very relevant what the specific charge was, because either way it would be a 25-minute hearing, depending on the nature of the charge.” So he decided to set another date for me to procure those documents, with translation, five months from now. I’m not afraid, because the documents are in my favor. It’s just a logistical challenge.

My opinion is that my judge doesn’t give a f*ck about my testimony, media articles, or even the DHS attorney. He just wants to see what he wants to see to make his independent judgment. He flat-out said that he “wouldn’t accept my testimony” regarding why and how it was impossible to obtain those documents. Like, what the hell, how does he want me to prove that something isn’t possible, if my testimony of how it isn’t possible isn’t even given one iota of consideration?

I guess my question is, based on all that has transpired, are things looking good or bad for me, based on your experience and gut feel? Is there anything else that I can do now on my side to buttress the chances of winning my case in August?

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Jason Dzubow March 24, 2017 at 12:37 pm

It sounds to me like, even if the judge thinks you are a big liar, he will have to give you some relief, given the strong evidence in your favor. The problem, it seems, is that the derogatory evidence (like a conviction) could block you from asylum and leave you with something less good (withholding or Torture Convention). You will have to do your best to get that info, and to document your efforts (in the event you cannot procure the info). The REAL ID Act requires you to get evidence that is reasonably available. If you make – and document – your effort, but still can’t get the evidence, it would probably be improper for the judge to deny your case based on your failure to get evidence. Good luck, Jason

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Hmong Bong March 24, 2017 at 7:15 pm

I actually have no convictions whatsoever. I skipped bail in my country. And my charge sheet, arrest warrant, etc. was for making a Facebook post deemed insulting to Islam. And the State Dept even quoted my case in my country’s report (2013), the Deputy Prime Minister himself revoked my passport, the police chief of the country said in local media that he would, verbatim, “hunt me down to the end of the world,” my memoir was banned, and they sentenced many similar offenders in my country to 1-2 years jail.

Given that I can document all these, would it be very improper or irregular for the judge to deny me asylum?

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Allen March 24, 2017 at 8:23 pm

sex tape? State department article, police hunting you on the TV…..man!!! you have a very colorful life!it is clear that you have very well founded fear of persecution. you have more than enough evidence for future persecution but you may have too many dirt available on the internet suggesting that you may have touched the law in your country which may be also illegal in the states. This is the real concern for the judge.

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Allen March 24, 2017 at 8:40 pm

Man!! you are an internet person. your full history is on google. Government lawyers and judge may have found this a possible conviction. I don’t if this one could block you from getting asylum. but as Jason suggested, you will have withholding of removal at least. but from the news online, it seems that you are doing these things simply just to seek asylum…

News: Malaysian sex blogger XX claims he’s seeking political asylum in US

Mr X first applied for asylum-seeker status in May, after disappearing from the public eye following a documentary shoot in Singapore. He said he feels confident the US will grant him asylum — and if they do not, he claimed he will continue posting “seditious material” online to strengthen his case.

Malaysian citizen XX gained notoriety in Malaysia and Singapore by posting erotic photographs and videos of their lovemaking as well as close-ups of their genitals on a blog. CHANNEL NEWSASIA

Hmong Bong March 25, 2017 at 6:02 am

Haa. I don’t appreciate you outing me here, but I’m impressed by your research skills and how you were able to identify me just based on the ambiguous details I provided. ☺

Jason Dzubow March 27, 2017 at 6:28 am

It depends on the case, but typically, where a case has very strong evidence like this, the person will be successful. Take care, Jason

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Konstantin March 26, 2017 at 6:48 pm

How could you be granted asylum if you were insulting someone else’s because of religion?

Every year people come to the United States seeking protection because they have suffered persecution or fear that they will suffer persecution due to:

Race
Religion
Nationality
Membership in a particular social group
Political opinion

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Hmong Bong March 28, 2017 at 5:08 am

Criticizing Islam is different, because Islam is the political system of all Muslim-majority countries. I come from an Islamic country with a Muslim majority, Shariah Law, and Islam as the official religion. You mean we can’t criticize a political ideology by which our lives are governed? What kind of fascist nonsense is that?

Of course we can, and we should, especially if it’s deserving of criticism. No idea should be impervious to criticism.

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Konstantin March 30, 2017 at 4:29 am

You wrote: insulting islam.
No, you can’t insult anybody based on their religion. That’s called discrimination in the US.
And yes, you can express your political opinions, which doesn’t equal to insulting somebody.
In your case your might been insulted and prosecuted by the government in your country.

Btw, Islam is not a political system.

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Oluremi March 23, 2017 at 9:54 pm

Is it possible to get asylee without interview?

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Iverson March 24, 2017 at 5:29 am

Probably not! The procress requireally to be heard by immigration officer if u don’t win to forward the case and appeal to the judge .

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Jason Dzubow March 24, 2017 at 6:40 am

Maybe for children, but I do not think so. Sometimes, the dependent only has a very short interview and gets asylum, but the main applicant has had a longer interview in that case. Take care, Jason

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Karim March 23, 2017 at 8:54 pm

Hi jason i read your blog since last 2 years.Thanks to guide us.i am a pending asylum case from New York in January 2015.By the Asylum interview schedule my interview turn will come in April or May 2017.i filed i589 form my own self.But now i am thinking to consult lawer fir Declaration and preparation of documents and interview. Can you be my Layer?

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Jason Dzubow March 24, 2017 at 6:36 am
Dice March 23, 2017 at 8:16 pm

Thanks Jason. If win and loss were two independent random variables, I wonder if predicting loss is easier, for finding one counter-argument in a client’s case or an incomplete requirement is sufficient for denial.

I’m pending an interview for asylum which takes me to the main question. If I believe my own argument, what does it mean for a judge to not believe as long as they couldn’t provide a counter-argument. To me then it sounds they don’t believe it by heart. Can a judge deny a case by heart? How could they communicate this formally?

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Allen March 23, 2017 at 9:19 pm

It is your full responsibility to provide some type of credible evidence and deliver your story in way that someone who is specialized in finding other peoples lie will be convinced that you are telling the truth. You cannot simply ask someone to believe in you just because you believe in yourself. It is your responsibility to give them a reason to believe in you. They gained their position as a judge because of their credibility and recognition of their judgement skills, so they can just deny your case if you cannot show them enough reason not to do so and it is their job to deny a case which doesn’t seem real. You cannot just put yourself at the same position with Judges, because they have already gained huge credibility in order to take that job, and you are not.

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Allen March 23, 2017 at 9:23 pm

It is you that seeking protection, not the judge that asking for your stay. So they don’t have to provide counter argument. Judge’s job is to evaluate your case and find about your credibility.

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Dice March 23, 2017 at 10:40 pm

The question may have implied the various assumptions in your answer, so it could have been framed much better.

One of several cases the question meant to address is the case of having “fear of persecution” but not having been persecuted. Assuming the credible occurrence of the former, it’s much more difficult to provide evidence for than the latter. The best a client could provide, for example, is an analogy to people he or she claims to be in the same position with and who were actually persecuted. This is arguably an insufficient evidence as it doesn’t even validate the client’s claim that they belong in this group of people at all.

The above is a very specific question. I hope that it doesn’t discredit the general idea and that it doesn’t imply challenging the judge rather than seeking best effort to support one’s case.

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Allen March 23, 2017 at 11:20 pm

I understand your confusion. but as I heard in many occasions, while you don’t have evidence for past persecution ( which is common for many asylum seekers), you should try very hard to gather some types of “evidence” to show that your current profile is very similar to the people who are being persecuted now. This include, news articles, testimonies about certain individuals’s persecution , who’s profile’s or actions are very similar to yours . Judges love written materials. since you don’t have any past persecution, you should at least try to give judges some clue (better in written) of what will happen to you if you go back by referencing others in the same situation with you.

Jason Dzubow March 24, 2017 at 6:33 am

In some ways, it is easier to predict a loss. For example, if you know the client has something that disqualifies him from asylum (maybe he missed the one-year filing bar and there is no exception), so that is a good point. As to the question, the judge is required to give a “specific, cogent reason” for finding the applicant “not credible.” The judge is not just supposed to deny from the heart (or, we would probably say, deny from the gut). However, I do think judges reach credibility conclusions based on their gut feelings sometimes, and this is obviously a bad thing. Hopefully, your judge follows the law and analyzes the case corrected under the law. If not, I suppose you can always appeal. Take care, Jason

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Kamau March 23, 2017 at 4:36 pm

Hello Jason

First, thank you for your shared insights. They are of great help. My question is: I’ve applied for asylum and included my wife and kids. I’m i be able to bring them over to the States before my hearing at the local asylum office? If so, what do I have to do or what forms do i need to fill? I’m asking this because my notification says that everyone that ive filed as a dependent should be here before the hearing date.

Thanks in advance

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Jason Dzubow March 24, 2017 at 6:26 am

Most asylum seekers are unable to bring family to the US until after they win the case, which causes a lot of hardships. Your family has to apply for a visa the same as anyone else (visitor visa, student visa, work visa, etc.). The fact that you have filed for asylum may make that more difficult, but they can try. Good luck, Jason

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Shazia Shahzad March 23, 2017 at 3:46 pm

Very true and full of facts column, i really appreciate your efforts, your words usually tell your experience which i feel ever,

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Adie March 23, 2017 at 1:10 pm

Hello Jason,
Your work , informational notes are appreciated. May I ask hoe.much experienced you have in asylum cases. Hoe many cases did you win ? How long it take to prepare the case / interview & to submit the asylum.application? .if a client is going to hire you where he has to live? Near to you or he can live in any city? Does the physical.distance between an attorney and the client matters?

Blessings ,

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Jason Dzubow March 24, 2017 at 6:17 am

You can see my bio at http://www.dzubowlaw.com. We do cases all over the US, and it usually takes us a few weeks to prepare and mail a case. It is nice to be near the attorney, but it doesn’t matter that much, since we can communicate by phone and email. Take care, Jason

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Adie March 24, 2017 at 7:13 am

Thank you Jason , I appreciate it from the core of my heqrt.

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Della March 23, 2017 at 12:33 pm

Hello,

A friend of mine has been here over two years and still has not been assigned a case. Her husband and child arrived separately and will have their final judgement in early May. Can you offer any insight?

Thanks. Your work is greatly appreciated.

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Jason Dzubow March 24, 2017 at 6:16 am

I do not understand your question. If your friend filed for asylum, it takes several years to get an interview. If her husband has an asylum case, she can join his case. Or if her husband wins asylum, he can file for her to get her asylum as well. Take care, Jason

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Jason Dzubow March 28, 2017 at 6:18 am

Not at all – I was just joking. I do tend to say them same thing again and again though, but that is because the system is kind-of stuck. Take care, Jason

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Jason Dzubow April 7, 2017 at 5:05 pm

It is probably easier to work with a local lawyer, but we do cases all over, so if you want to discuss, let me know (however, I will be out of the office until next Thursday). Take care, Jason

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