The “New” Travel Ban and How It Affects Asylees and Refugees

by Jason Dzubow on July 6, 2017

Late last month, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision allowing the Trump Administration to begin enforcing its travel ban against all refugees and against individuals from six “banned” countries–Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.

Travel Ban Redux, or Once More Into the Breach (of Decorum), Dear Friends

Since the Court’s decision is (to put it kindly) a little vague, it was initially unclear how exactly the Administration would enforce its executive order (“EO”). Now, the Department of Homeland Security and the State Department have issued some guidance, and so we have a better idea about the effects of the EO. Of course, given that the Supreme Court’s decision is subject to interpretation, we can expect more litigation in the weeks and months ahead, but for today, I want to discuss how the EO will likely be enforced with regards to asylum seekers, asylees, and refugees.

Asylum Seekers: Asylum seekers are people who are physically present in the United States and who have a pending asylum case. The short answer for asylum seekers from banned countries is that the EO has essentially no effect on your case (the longer answer is here). Cases will move forward and be adjudicated as before (i.e., slowly). I should note that since the beginning of the Trump Administration, we have had several cases approved, including cases from Muslim countries and banned countries.

Asylees and Refugees Who Have Already Been Resettled in the United States: Asylees are people who have been granted asylum by the U.S. government. Refugees in this section refers to people approved for refugee status overseas who have already been resettled in the United States. According to a DHS FAQ sheet (question # 11):

Returning refugees and asylees, i.e., individuals who have already been granted asylum or refugee status in the United States, are explicitly excluded from this Executive Order. As such, they may continue to travel abroad and return to the United States consistent with existing requirements.

This means that if you already received asylum, or if you were already resettled in the U.S. as a refugee, you can travel outside the U.S. and return, and the EO does not affect you. However, if you are from one of the “banned” countries, it is a good idea to keep an eye on the news to make sure there are no future changes that might affect your ability to return (one helpful website is the American Immigration Council).

Also, according to DHS (question # 22), people who received a green card based on asylee or refugee status are not affected by the EO.

Asylees and refugees can file for their family members (spouses and minor, unmarried children) to come to the United States, and the EO does not block those family members from coming here. According to DHS (question # 34), “Family members planning to join refugees or asylees are only approved for travel if a bona fide relationship to a spouse or parent in the United States exists. Therefore, if the relationship were confirmed, the travel suspension would not apply.” (see also question # 36). So asylees who have filed I-730 petitions should not be prevented from reuniting with their family members in the U.S.

Refugees Who Are Waiting to Come to the U.S. for the First Time: It is important to note that all refugees, even people from countries that are not banned, are affected by the EO. According to DHS (question # 31), “Under the Executive Order as limited by the Supreme Court’s decision, any refugee, regardless of nationality, is prevented from admission to the United States unless he or she (1) demonstrates a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States or (2) obtains a national interest waiver from the Department of State or CBP [Customs and Border Protection].”

The EO blocks admission of all refugees (other than those who meet an exception to the rule) for 120 days. According to the U.S. State Department, there are exceptions for “those refugees who are in transit and booked for travel,” though these people will likely all be in the U.S. by now.

According to DHS (question # 29), refugees can still come to the U.S. if they have a “close” family relationship with someone already here. DHS interprets this to mean:

[A] parent (including parent-in-law), spouse, child, adult son or daughter, fiancé(e), son-in-law, daughter-in-law, and sibling, whether whole or half. This includes step relationships. However, “close family” does not include grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law and any other “extended” family members.

Certainly we can expect this interpretation to be the subject of litigation. Why is a half-sibling a close relative, but a grandparent is not?

Also, a refugee with a bona fide relationship to an “entity” in the United States is still eligible to travel here, but what this means is also unclear. According to a senior official at the State Department:

As regards relationships with entities in the United States, these need to be formal, documented, and formed in the ordinary course of events rather than to evade the executive order itself. Importantly, I want to add that the fact that a resettlement agency in the United States has provided a formal assurance for refugees seeking admission is not sufficient, in and of itself, to establish a bona fide relationship under the ruling. We’re going to provide additional information to the field on this.

I expect we will see litigation on this point as well. Litigation means delay, and so the likely effect of the EO on refugees will be to greatly reduce the number of people coming to the United States.

Blocking refugees from resettling in the U.S. has been a goal of the Trump Administration since the beginning, and it is one reason why Mr. Trump was elected in the first place. So, like it or not (and obviously, I don’t), this is what democracy looks like. But of course the result is that innocent people will die, and it is all the more reason for those of us who support our refugee program to try to convince the general public on this point, to work with our representatives in Congress, and to litigate in court.

The EO’s impact on nationals of the six banned countries and on all refugees is temporary, at least for now. The Supreme Court will take up the merits of the EO this fall, and the President may issue new EOs (and Congress may pass laws that impact immigration). In essence, all this is a moving target, and so asylees, asylum seekers, and refugees need to keep abreast of any changes. We also have to keep working hard, in order to protect victims of persecution and to defend our nation’s values, which these days seem in grave jeopardy.

{ 116 comments… read them below or add one }

zuliy July 24, 2017 at 9:04 pm

hi jason I an u visa dependent. My question is some body told me if i take public benefits they will not approve my green card and even citizenship is that true?. The only benefit i get is medicaid for my 21 under children. I also buy insurance from Obama care. Please let me know.


Jason Dzubow July 25, 2017 at 6:24 am

I doubt that is true, but I do not know, as I do not know a lot about U visas. Take care, Jason


evalyne July 20, 2017 at 1:33 am

Hi i appied for assylum in june 2016 got my EAD december 2016 if i apply for AP and travel will coming back to the states be a problem?


Jason Dzubow July 20, 2017 at 5:39 pm

It should be ok, but if you are from one of the “banned” countries, you should definitely keep an eye on the news to make sure there are no changes that block you from returning. Take care, Jason


Rohan July 19, 2017 at 8:22 pm

Hi Jason,
Thank you for your help to people by suggestion.
I applied asylum after one year from the my entry to US, but when I applied I was in my status so does it count as normal time-frame because I was in status or it counts one year after’s
application,Please if you provide me something clearly It will be great help.Thanks again Jason.


Jason Dzubow July 20, 2017 at 5:35 pm

If you were still “in status” (for example, F-1 visa and still a full time student), that should give you an exception to the one-year bar. But since I do not know the specifics of your case, if you want to be sure, talk to a lawyer. Take care, Jason


Deep July 19, 2017 at 4:48 pm

Hi Jason
I applied asylum after 1 year,before that I had different status after expire that status i could not go back my country because of worst situation. One of my friend told me that the asylum office do not grant asylum if I apply after one year even I have strong proof, he told me they will send me the court.Is it truth? Please help me.



Jason Dzubow July 19, 2017 at 8:12 pm

A person is required to file for asylum within one year of arrival or the case will be denied, but there are exceptions to that rule. If you meet an exception, you can get asylum at the asylum office. If you were lawfully here for the entire year and up until the time you filed for asylum, this probably would meet an exception. This is an important issue and I recommend you talk to a lawyer about the one-year bar to see whether you can meet an exception. Take care, JAson


Deep July 19, 2017 at 8:28 pm

Thank you Jason.


Asylum seeker July 18, 2017 at 8:15 pm

Hi Jason,

I am currently waiting for my EAD and it has been 90 days. Do you think it is better/faster to expedite it through USCIS itself or go through the Senator? I have a faculty job offer from a University (non-profit), so do you think I can use “Nonprofit organization whose request is in furtherance of the cultural and social interests of the United States”? Thank you in advance!


Jason Dzubow July 19, 2017 at 6:28 am

I am not sure what you mean. If you are applying for a new EAD based on asylum pending, there is an automatic extension of the old card once you file to renew. As for expediting, you can do either way or both; I think neither is particular effective, but once in a while, USCIS actually expedites, and there is no harm in trying. Take care, Jason


Pratap July 18, 2017 at 7:29 pm

Hi Jason,
My asylum application is pending since 0ctober,2015 at New York Asylum office, i chekced today and I saw they are working with the applications filed in March 2015, so can you tell me when I can expect my interview letter from them? I look forward your response.



Jason Dzubow July 19, 2017 at 6:26 am

It is not really predictable, as thing change that affect how cases are processed, but most likely you will have the interview within 6 months or a year. Take care, Jason


M July 16, 2017 at 9:39 am

The driver license’s expiration date is linked to the date on the EAD card. Has anyone changed the license when an EAD card is expiring and another hasn’t arrived yet?
Jason, an expired EAD can be good for up to 6 months for employment purposes after the date listed on it; are you aware whether DMVs know about this change and whether they’ll be extending a license for this period?


Jason Dzubow July 18, 2017 at 6:05 am

The expired EAD is only valid for an extra 6months if you’ve filed to renew the EAD (in the same category – like asylum pending). I know that people have extended DLs based on the EAD extension, but I do not know if that works at all DMVs, though it should. Take care, Jason


M July 18, 2017 at 10:31 am

Yes, this is what I meant, thank you!


deep July 16, 2017 at 2:41 am

Dear Sir

Thanks for you help to everyone
i have que i am non banned country and i want to travel to USA
for seeking asylum inside USA. can i seek asylum in this current scenario.

Pls ans i am very thankful to you.

Thanks again


Jason Dzubow July 16, 2017 at 7:19 am

If you are physically present in the United States, you can seek asylum here. It does not matter whether or not you are from a banned country. Anyone who is here can ask for asylum. Take care, Jason


Ryan July 13, 2017 at 5:33 pm

Hello Jason,
Thanks so much for the valued article.
It is a good idea to say let us live as if we won the asylum case, study English, work and buy house.
I have had my pending asylum case since 9th 2016, My quick question is 1) could you please give me some ideas about the waiting time for my first interview with asylum office? I got hopeless with asylum interview bulletin. (I got EAD two months ago?)
Any risks for me to apply for advance parole to travel this time?
Thanks so much.


Jason Dzubow July 14, 2017 at 6:36 am

I do not know and no one knows how long cases will take for the interview – the Scheduling Bulletin is the best guess we have. I can tell you that things are moving more quickly than before, so hopefully, the Scheduling Bulletin will continue to show progress and the wait will not be as long as we think. You should be able to get AP and travel outside the US and return. If you are from a “banned” country, you should talk to a lawyer before you try this, but we have not heard about people having trouble returning using AP. Take care, Jason


Ryan July 14, 2017 at 9:56 pm

Thanks a lot, Jason. Good luck.


Bhanu July 13, 2017 at 3:55 pm

Hi Jason,
I am prime applicant in pending asylum for 2 years, we applied for EAD renew(second time) we are 4 family members, we aapply together but today I got renewed letter for myself and my younger son but my wife and elder sons status show still shame like before please can tell me why this happened? is this normal or some problem. I look forward your reply.



Jason Dzubow July 14, 2017 at 6:34 am

It often happens that people file at the same time, but get answers at different times. I would not worry about it yet. If they do not have the receipt within a month of filing, then it might be time to contact USCIS or take other action. Take care, Jason


Diate July 13, 2017 at 2:35 pm

Hi Jason,

I had a question regarding asylum based on childhood domestic violence and escaping forced marriage. My application is based on childhood abuse from a older relative who has now passed away and the increasing pressure from my immediate family members to marry. Female relatives in my family have been forcibly married, my first cousin is now living with her abuser as a result with no support from her family. A part of my reason to flee my home country was to escape the same situation. I have written all of this information including a detailed narrative about my childhood abuse, and chat logs from my parents sending me violent threats if I don’t comply with their wishes if I come home. My question is what are the odds of my asylum case winning?

I thoroughly read about the Board of Immigration Appeals stance on gender-related claims of domestic violence, and wanted to know if my escaping a forced marriage with threats from my immediate family would lend merit to my case?

I stress everyday hoping that I don’t return to my home country and inevitably be forced into a marriage without any concern to my safety.

Hope you are well


Jason Dzubow July 14, 2017 at 6:32 am

It is possible to win cases like this (I remember we won a couple cases like this for women from Egypt). You do need to show a “nexus”, meaning that you have to fit your case into a protected category under the asylum law. In your case, one possibility might be religion – if your family thinks you are a non-believer because of your actions, the case could be one of religious persecution. There might also be a particular social group – such as “women who refuse to follow their family’s wishes to marry” or “women who disobey their parents”, but PSG cases can be tricky. It might also be political – they want to harm you because they do not like your “political opinion” about how women should behave. DV cases are often not easy because of this nexus requirement, and I do recommend that you find a lawyer to help you, if possible. I did a post about how to find a free lawyer on September 22, 2016 – maybe that would help. Take care, Jason


Adam July 12, 2017 at 7:20 pm

Hi Jason,
My asylum application has been pending for 2 years now, my brother just got his US citizenship, so can he apply I -130 for me and my family. I heard it will be faster for his relatives who are already in US. After my brother has applied for I-130 how long will be the procedure? Since we have been living here in the US for over 4 years, will that increase the chance of us getting our green card through this process?
Please let me know and as always
Thank you,



Jason Dzubow July 13, 2017 at 6:19 am

He can file an I-130, but the wait time is very long – maybe 12 or 13 years – and you would most likely need to leave the US and then return to get your green card, and this would be a real problem for most people (talk to a lawyer about your individual case if you try this). You can see the approximate wait times if you Google “DOS Visa Bulletin”. Take care, Jason


aman July 12, 2017 at 2:40 pm

hi jason
Thanks for helping us. i have a simple question

do i need to sent separate i589 application for each family member ? of just addition of page number 9 with photograph of each family member. please guide


Jason Dzubow July 13, 2017 at 6:08 am

Each family member does not need his own I-589. However, there are a number of documents that need to be sent besides the page 9 for each person, and it can depend on the case, so I cannot advise you about that here. The instructions explain what to do, though they could be easier to understand. Take care, Jason


Shawn July 12, 2017 at 11:28 am

So Jason, I am not sure if you remember when I asked you about why it could take more than 30 days without getting a receipt from USCIS after submitting your application for EAD renewal? It turned out that the attorney didn’t submit the application after all. The application was just sitting there all along. So more than 60 days have gone out of the 120 days before you can submit the application. Is it possible to apply for renewal if you have less than 60 days on the current EAD? I read somewhere that said that you must apply within 90 days of the expiry date on the current EAD. Can you apply if there are 30, 20, 40… days left on the current card?


Hope July 12, 2017 at 10:04 pm

You better find another lawyer for your case


Shawn July 13, 2017 at 10:46 am

Hope, you are 100% right. This is the second time she is doing this.


Jason Dzubow July 13, 2017 at 6:06 am

That is annoying, but there should be no bad effect – You can apply any time, even after the old EAD expires (though I do not know if you get the automatic extension if you renew after the old EAD expires). You should have the receipt in less than a month, and then you will get an automatic extension of 180 days. So in other words, you should be fine and there should not be a gap in your period of employment eligibility. Take care, Jason


Shawn July 13, 2017 at 10:45 am

Thank you for the reply, Jason.


Tom July 11, 2017 at 8:51 pm

Hi Jason,
Thank you very much for your blog and hard work!
I got married to a US citizen and filed for an adjusting of status based on our marriage. Also, I had filed for asylum but never been called for interview due to a backlog. Last month I went into a local Asylum office and asked about my case, and they said it’d moved and the case wasn’t there anymore because I filed for AOS. It just made me confused. Is it possible to put my asylum case on hold? or what do I do now if my AOS case gets denied?
Thank you,


Jason Dzubow July 12, 2017 at 6:35 am

Unless you closed the asylum case, it should still be pending. It may be that your file was sent to a different office because of the AOS. If the AOS is denied, your asylum case should continue (but contact the asylum office about that if it happens, to be sure). Hopefully, the AOS will work out, and then you can contact the asylum office and close your case (though some people with a green card also want asylum so they can get the refugee travel document – so you do not have to cancel your asylum case even if you get the GC, though these days, my impression is that it is better to close the asylum case once you have the GC). Take care, Jason


Anna July 10, 2017 at 11:13 pm

Good morning! If immigration case in the court can I apply for advance parole?


Jason Dzubow July 12, 2017 at 6:22 am

If you travel while your case is in court, even if you have Advance Parole, it is considered a deportation and you cannot come back. It may be possible to talk to the ICE attorney and get permission to travel, but we have never done that for anyone, and my impression is that it is very difficult. Take care, Jason


Anna July 17, 2017 at 4:24 pm

Thank you ! I don t have decision after interview yet because of check my background.


Ahmat July 10, 2017 at 10:57 pm

Hi! Jason
I hope you’re doing well. 10th of June my lawyer applied for my EAD application to USCIS. One of my friend from Ethiopia applied for his EAD application one week after me, after one week he got the confirmation letter, but until now I did not get any confirmation letter from USCIS.
My question is why I still don’t receive the confirmation letter from USCIS? should I ask them that if they received my EAD application?
I will look forward to hearing from you, many thanks!


Jason Dzubow July 12, 2017 at 6:17 am

It can take up to 4 weeks to get the receipt. Maybe ask the lawyer when exactly the application was mailed. If you do not get something soon, you can call USCIS to inquire – or the lawyer can. The phone number is on their website, Take care, Jason


Devdas July 10, 2017 at 10:47 pm

Hi jason

Much respect!

I have one concerns

I have pending asylum case since feb 2016 i im currently working AND GOT my second work permit renewed!

I find a girl who is a citizen of New Zealand we might marry since she is a citizen of that country she can come here for a visit- my question is that considering my current pending status can she stay with me in USA- as my wife- since she dont have to apply for asylum bkz she is already a citizen of a developed coutry- what are the best way so that she can stay here and work like i work



Jason Dzubow July 12, 2017 at 6:15 am

She can be added to your case as your dependent and if you are granted asylum, she will get asylum too (even though she is from NZ). Also, she cabin qualify for a work permit once she is added to the case. Contact the local asylum office for instructions about adding a spouse to your case. You can find their contact info if you follow the link at right called Asylum Office Locator. Take care, Jason


Devdas July 12, 2017 at 2:54 pm

Thank u very much

Can i do court marriage while my case is pending-


Jason Dzubow July 13, 2017 at 6:09 am

Yes, and then – if your spouse is a US citizen and if you are eligible – you can file for your green card based on the marriage. Take care, Jason


Devdas July 13, 2017 at 6:23 pm

She is not American citizen she is citizen of NZ- she wanna come here- can i do court marriage with my current pending status-

Luli July 10, 2017 at 6:47 pm

Hi everyone
As I’m seeing from January nothing is changed in asylum interview schedule bulletin for NY office !!!
Thanks you all


Sara July 10, 2017 at 8:10 pm

That’s not true. They’ve been conducting half a month’s worth of interviews every month.
How are you not seeing progress?


Luli July 10, 2017 at 10:19 pm

Maybe you are looking in different page..


Sara July 10, 2017 at 10:25 pm

NY AO progress:

March: Dec. 2014 – Jan. 2015
April: Jan. 2015 – Feb. 2015
May: Feb. 2015


There’s only one bulletin page.


Luli July 11, 2017 at 8:12 am

These dates are long time ago Sara, that’s what I’m saying
Now we are in half of July, and the dates still is in May…

Sara July 11, 2017 at 1:21 pm

I replied to you right last comment this morning, Luli, but my reply got dumped at the bottom for some reason.
I’ve been checking the bulletin every day since the beginning of the month. Here’s hoping they decide it’s time to update it.

Sara July 11, 2017 at 1:22 pm

your* last comment

Asylum Seeker July 10, 2017 at 11:03 am

Hi Jason,

First of All, Thanks for the outstanding good work, you are doing for the people in need of True Guidance.

Secondly, I applied for Asylum in Nov 2014 and was done finger print at that month as well. I was Interviewed on 07-05-2017. At the end of the interview A.O give me the letter to receive the decision after 2 weeks. She said i don’t think there is anything problematic on your file which makes your decision pending more than 14 days. I have a question, I didn’t get any Re- Finger Print Notice as of today and I assume that finger prints expired after 15 months. Is it a good sign or a bad sign for me not getting FP Notice.


Luli July 10, 2017 at 6:44 pm

Hi, I’m sorry for asking, but can you tell us in wich office did you conduct your interview
I’m waiting for NY office .
Your timeline as i see was 2 years and 8 months!
Good luck with everything


Jason Dzubow July 12, 2017 at 6:00 am

Fingerprints are a mystery to me and USCIS has changed the policy re: fingerprints several times, so I do not take it as a good or a bad sign. However, I can tell you, at least of my own cases, more than 50% of the time, when we have a 2-week pick-up notice, they call me and change it to a mail-out notice, so hopefully your decision will be ready in two weeks (and hopefully it will be good), but you have to stay patient until you receive it. Good luck, Jason


Asylum Seeker July 12, 2017 at 8:44 am

Thanks Jason. I appreciate your wise words.


Asylum Seeker July 18, 2017 at 12:09 pm

Hi Jason,

You were right. I got a call from my lawyers office a while ago and they are saying that they receive call from Asylum office to not come pick the decision. The Asylum office will send the decision to lawyer now. I am a bit confused, will they only send the decision to lawyer’s office or to me as well. The A.O was very confident that i will be going to get my decision in 14 days. Anyways let’s see. Thanks


Jason Dzubow July 19, 2017 at 6:12 am

I really wish they would not be so confident about the 2-week pick-ups. In my experience, the majority of them are changed to mail-outs. They should send the decision to you and to your lawyer. Take care, Jason


nola July 9, 2017 at 7:17 am

Hey Jason.
I like to read this blog. It feeds me with important info.
There is question that comes into my mind.
Seeking asylum seems to be(for the US gov) as if someone is breaking the law or did something that he/she shouldn’t do. Asylum is an humaniterian act that the country offer to those in need,that ‘s what US value stand for. Why when seeking asylum family members left back are somehow punished by making visa process complex for them. Nowadays once the officer get to now that there one of yours that is seeking or have been an asylee in the past even if s/he has become US citizen after, it is closer to impossible to get a visa.It ‘s said he may believe you try to join the case or seek asylum too (but if it ‘s proved that you are in need of asylum I guess they should be no problem). People should know that person seeking asylum is trying to escape violence,s/he is trying to get freedom that other are enjoying but take for granted.
In so many asylum seekers country trying to be free is considered as a crime, in some cases you are even killed for that.


Jason Dzubow July 9, 2017 at 11:14 am

Seeking asylum is not a crime; it is part of US law. However, applying for a non-immigrant visa means that the person wishes to come to the US temporarily and then return home. If the embassy thinks the person will stay permanently and violate the visa, they will deny the visa. This used to be less of a problem when asylum cases were faster, and the person granted asylum could bring her family members. But now the cases are usually very long, and family separation is a huge problem. I believe USCIS should prioritize cases where there is family separation, but they do not do this. There certainly is a love/hate relationship with asylum in the United States, and asylum applicants and their families are the ones who suffer because of this tension. Take care, Jason


naval July 9, 2017 at 5:10 am

Dear Jason.

I am ready to submit expedite request of my case.
Asylum filed 03 Nov 2016 in SF office.
EAD applied 04 May 2017
EAD received 21 May 2017
Now I have SSN and start work and employer deducting tax. My question is Can my wife applied for visitor visa to come here to meet me from INDIA?
No kids.. Or can she come here on J1J2 visa???

Please solve my proble.


Jason Dzubow July 9, 2017 at 11:10 am

She can try to come on a B or J visa, but the fact that you have filed for asylum may make it more difficult to get the visa. I did a posting on April 18, 2014 that might help. Take care, Jason


Asylee July 9, 2017 at 11:39 pm

Which office processed your EAD? Texas?


Asylum seeker July 10, 2017 at 10:33 am

Am surprised you got your EAD so fast and I applied for mine the same time (April 2017) as you. I am still waiting on the approval till now. I also submitted my ead application in the same Nebraska as you.

Could it be because you submitted your application 180 days after you got your asylum receipt? Cos i submitted mine 150 days after i got my asylum application receipt

Jason what do you think?


Jason Dzubow July 12, 2017 at 5:53 am

Waiting times for EADs are very unpredictable. We will send two EAD applications for family members in the same envelope, and one will get the EAD quickly while the other person will wait. I do not know why, but I think it is mostly luck, and I think filing after 150 days or 180 days makes no difference, but I do not know that for sure. Take care, Jason


Ali July 9, 2017 at 3:53 am

Hi Jason,
Thanks for all you do.
I got my initial EAD two months ago. What is A number? Is it Alien number? As my asylum case still pending. Do I have it and How do I find it?
Many thanks.


Jason Dzubow July 9, 2017 at 11:08 am

The Alien number and A number mean the same thing. It is a 9-digit number (these days, they usually start with 20…) and it appears on your asylum receipt and your EAD. Take care, Jason


Ayesha July 8, 2017 at 10:50 pm

Hi sir i am asylum seeker and i am going to apply for ead slir i want tn know that can i apply for parole for travel to makkah for my religious obligatiob along with my work permit because i am from pakistan and i want to take parole for saudi arab so i want to know cam i apply for advance parole to go to saudi arab which ia not my home country and what impact does it have on my case??? Thankyou so much for your informative blog….


Jason Dzubow July 9, 2017 at 11:06 am

You can apply for Advance Parole, form I-131, available at, and you should be fine as long as you do not go to your home country. You have to give a “humanitarian” reason for travel, and I do not know whether USCIS would accept a pilgrimage to Mecca as a reason – normally, our clients travel to visit a sick relative and we give a doctor’s note – but maybe it would be a sufficient reason for them to grant AP. Talk to a lawyer for help if you are not sure. Take care, Jason


Ayesha July 9, 2017 at 11:59 pm

Thankyou soo much sir may ALLAH almighty blessed you as you are helping people …..


TIk July 22, 2017 at 4:45 pm

Waiting for your reply


TIk July 22, 2017 at 4:44 pm

I am from Pakistan too ,have applied assylum through Sanfrancisco in jan 2017.
Plz do contact me. I really wish to vist SAUDIA even UMRAH purpose.


runner July 22, 2017 at 6:00 pm

has anyone applied to the sanfransisco office lately? i would like to know how long does it take for the reciept to arrive when you send your case ? and how long does it take for the work permit from the SanFran office ?
i want ppl who have applied to enl5ighten me . Thank you


Jason Dzubow July 23, 2017 at 7:17 am

We have not done a case there recently, but you should get the receipt in less than a month. As for the EAD, everyone must wait 150 days after the asylum application was received, and then they can apply for an EAD. To get the EAD usually takes another 2 to 4 months. Maybe others have more specific info about SF. Take care, Jason


Raïs July 7, 2017 at 10:02 pm

Hi Jason thank you for your precious help.
Last month I went to my asylum office and put my name on their short .
I just wanna know how that works?


Jason Dzubow July 9, 2017 at 10:54 am

There are probably a lot of people ahead of you in line on the short list, so you have to wait for them. Once it is your turn, if someone else’s interview is canceled or if there is somehow an open time slot, the asylum office will contact you and offer it to you. If you do not accept it, they may give you another opportunity (or two) to take an interview time slot, but if you do not go, you will be interviewed as if you were never on the short list (in other words, there is no penalty). Make sure that all your documents are submitted, as you may not be allowed to submit additional documents for the case at your interview. Take care, Jason


Raïs July 10, 2017 at 12:24 am

Thank you


Scopa July 10, 2017 at 4:10 pm

Dear Jason and Rais,
I didnt understood your point.what is putting once name on the short list? Can you elaborate more? I am getting really amazing and important informations from this blog.
Thank you Dear Jason for all your efforts and thank you all colleagues here.


Jason Dzubow July 12, 2017 at 6:04 am

I did a posting about the short list on February 26, 2015 – maybe that would help. Take care, Jason

Anna July 7, 2017 at 3:51 pm

Dear Mr. or Ms. Lawyer!
My name is Anastasiia. I waited for my asylum interview two years. My interview for asylum was conducted on December 05, 2016. I received a letter from asylum office on or about December 9, 2016 with the heading “Notice of Change in Decision from Pick-up to Mail-out” that I would be receiving a decision by mail, and that I was not required to appear in person on December 19, 2016 as originally indicated in the letter given to me at the time of the interview. To date, I have not received the decision. Can you help me with this situation?


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 5:01 pm

It is very common for that to happen. You can email the asylum office and ask for a status update on your case. You can find their contact info if you follow the link at right called Asylum Office Locator. Take care, Jason


Tatianna July 7, 2017 at 3:40 pm

hie jason,

ifound your articles very informative and helpful. i am kindly requesting your assistance and i will go straight to the point.

Are these valid reasons for expediting my asylum case?

1) Can i mention this as a humanitarian ground for expediting a case?
i left my husband back home however we are customarily married (no marriage certificate, he paid lobola/bride price to my parents as an african culture ) thus, i still use my surname/last name.

2) When i came i was already pregnant and i delivered here in the USA on December 1, 2016. My daughter uses her father’s last name. Will it be valid reason to say that i need his father to come and be a family raising our child together and attach the birth certificate as proof? the other thing is that raising a child on my own here in America is very expensive worse if i am single. Can i state this?

3) My mother was on my Medical Aid when i was at home since i was working, she is diabetic. when i was nolonger on the payroll, she ceased to have medical attention too. now she hardly gets her monthly pills for diabetes and no longer goes for her medical check up since i am here and financially unstable. Can i use this as a ground too?

4) I am financially very unstable when i was at home i could sustain my family’s needs especially the basics for instance food and medication but now its very impossible. Can i mention this too?

I would appreciate if you respond,

Thank you.


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 5:00 pm

I previously replied to this. Let me know if you did not receive it. Take care, Jason


Tatianna July 7, 2017 at 7:11 pm

I did not receive the response Jason, i would appreciate if you copy and re-post the response. Thank you.


Jason Dzubow July 9, 2017 at 8:00 am

1 – Unless you are legally married with a marriage certificate, I think this is not a good reason to expedite, as you cannot bring him to the US if you win the case. 2 – Without a marriage certificate, you cannot bring him, even if you have a child together. 3 – I do not see why this is a basis to expedite your asylum case. 4 – If you can explain why you need asylum to become financially stable, maybe this would work as a reason to expedite. I do think you should try to legalize your marriage and get a marriage certificate. That will allow your husband to come here if you win the case, and it will make it easier to expedite your case. Maybe your husband can find his own way here (student visa, work visa, visitor visa, etc.). But without the legal marriage document, your asylum case cannot help him. Take care, Jason


Ray July 7, 2017 at 3:20 pm

from which date the count of 120 days starts??


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 5:00 pm

I am not sure what you are referring to, sorry, Jason


Art July 7, 2017 at 3:07 pm

Hi, thank you very much for your posts and responses to questions . I applied for asylum and my 150 days are about to be up, my question is when applying for initial EAD do you need to also send a copy of your passport? And do initial ead’s also take 2-4 months to be processed? I will be applying through the Dallas office. Look forward to your response.


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 4:59 pm

We send copies of the biography/photo page of the passport, but some people do not have passports, and then of course, you cannot send a copy. Initial EADs take 2 to 4 months, but it seems like these days, it is closer to 4 months. Take care, Jason


Miller July 8, 2017 at 12:54 pm

Hello, I’d like to share my experience.

Applied for asylum at the end of December 2016 (Los Angeles). After about 160 days applied for initial EAD category c08 (I believe the case was handled by Texas, but I’m not sure). They (Phoenix, AZ) recieved the application at 5th of June. I got approved at 29th. I received the card (From Missouri) on 7/7/17. Whole process took less than a month (excluding mailing). I didn’t correspond with anyone nor expedited the application. My friend (same nationality) received his card in about the same time. I hope this helps! Take care everyone and again thanks to Jason for everything


Art July 8, 2017 at 3:15 pm

Thank you Miller for sharing your timeline. Makes me hopeful that I wont have to wait 4 months for my EAD.


Jason Dzubow July 9, 2017 at 10:59 am

Thank you – Your experience was faster than most of my clients (maybe we need to hire you!). Take care, Jason


Sam A July 7, 2017 at 5:25 am

Hello Mr. Jason,

Please confirm that, this EO barring Only new refugees to come to US but not new applicants from filing affirmative asylum case.



Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 4:52 pm

The EO does not block people from applying for asylum or getting their decision. Take care, Jason


Sara July 6, 2017 at 11:56 pm

Jason ,Thank you very much. You are one of a kind!!!


Josh L July 6, 2017 at 10:01 pm

I used to think lawyers want nothing but money.
This blog really changes my mind.
Thank you Jason.


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 6:45 am

Thanks – I do want money; I am just not very good about getting it…


Tina July 7, 2017 at 9:35 pm

Your attitude to money is why you most/would likely have a lot of it. Thanks for all you do.


Asylum seeker July 6, 2017 at 3:54 pm

I can not thank you enough for your precious continuous help that you always provide to asylum seekers via your worthy blog. I have a particular question that I would be greatly thankful if you answer. I am an asylum seeker from egypt in US. I have recently filed for asylum. My mother and father already have the US tourist visa before I filed for asylum but they have not used it yet. They want to come to USA to visit me. But as you know their names are already mentioned in the asylum application. My question is that can they be denied entry in the US port of entry if they come to USA because of my asylum application or since they already have the visa, they can pass without any problems.


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 6:29 am

There is no guarantee, and they could be turned back once they get here, but I think this is very unlikely. Spouses and minor children of asylum seekers usually have a hard time coming to the US because the government thinks they will join your asylum case. Parents cannot join your case. However, your application may cause the US government to think your parents will want to stay as well, and this could cause them to deny entry. Take care, Jason


Keo July 6, 2017 at 1:58 pm

Hi dear Jadon,
I’m from Iran, one of the travel banned countries in president Trump’s order and right now, I’m in Canada as a student arrived two months ago. I was a political prisoner in Iran and I was sentenced to 4 years in jail, 10 years denial of having passport and travel overseas ban. I was accused of Spying, having relations with aliens, CIA officer. After two years some rules changed in Iran and I could take back my passport. I have all documents about court and prison and even checkable online through the Iranian Judiciary website.
Now my question is according to my story is it better for me to get asylum in Canada or the US? Considering I prefer living in the US. I know about the safe third country agreement but as Spying can be sentenced to death in Iran I think my case is one of the exemptions. And second question, given that I don’t have a us visa, so can I request seeking asylum at the land border? Or if I cross the border and enter the US, is it possible to seek asylum? Or do you have any advice or suggestion for me?
Many thanks,


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 6:26 am

I think the Safe Third Party Agreement will create problems for you, even if you come into the US and then seek asylum affirmatively. You might want to hire a lawyer in the US to research this question for you before you decide to come here. If you seek asylum at the border, you most likely will be detained, and you could remain detained for the duration of your case (at least 4 or 5 months, probably longer). Take care, Jason


Runner July 11, 2017 at 3:49 am

Hello Keo
Hope you are well and hope everything works out for you but I’m curious and I hope you can answer my question
Why do you want to move out of Canada ? Since Canada is very friendly with refugees and asylum seekers and is actually very supportive than the USA atleast currently and citizenship can be obtained in 3 years which is so short in comparison to the US which is atleast 10 years .
Thanks and I await for your reply


John July 12, 2017 at 11:16 am

Are you bored in Canada? hahaha


Sara July 6, 2017 at 12:39 pm

Hi Jason,

Quick question- how soon after applying for asylum can one apply for advance parole?

Thank you


Josh L July 6, 2017 at 10:03 pm

Theoretically, immediately.


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 6:22 am

As soon as you have the receipt, as you need the Alien number to apply for AP. Take care, Jason


bass July 6, 2017 at 10:58 am

Hi Mr. Jason,
Thank you very much for your efforts to clarify all the confusions around the new EO. My question is regarding the bending asylum bona fida family members from the banned countries such as the spouse , can he apply for visit visa according to the clause in the EO which allowing them to enter . what I meant is the reason of the visit is to come to see their family members here in US.
with all my appreciations


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 6:22 am

I suppose theoretically, under the new rule, a spouse from a banned country could come here to visit. If the person already has a visa, he should be able to come here. If he does not have a visa, my guess is that he will have a hard time getting one, even if he is not “banned”. Take care, Jason


Ally July 6, 2017 at 10:40 am

Hi Jason,

Thanks for explaining the indeed “vague” decision to worried asylum seekers.

I have a question regarding advanced parole for an asylum seeker spouse, if she got an advance parole and traveling back, will her husband (with just pending asylum case ) and her two American citizens children be considered bona fide relation?


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 6:19 am

Remember that this travel ban only affects people from the six countries. But even if she is from one of these countries, based on that DHS memo, she has a close relative in the US and should be allowed to return. Of course, given all that is happening, it is safer not to travel, unless that is really necessary. Take care, Jason


Danish July 6, 2017 at 9:54 am

Sir thanks for the information, can you please explain what will happen during this period i730 approved family members?
My wife and kids cases(i730) were approved a long time ago now finally it arrived in us embassy pakistan, it shows me the status on embassy website, “”READY “””
It’s been more than a month for this status
And it shows to ready for interviews
Please explain


Jason Dzubow July 7, 2017 at 6:16 am

They should get interviewed and come here. Pakistan is not a “banned” country. If the embassy is too slow, you can go to their website and find an email address, and then email them to ask about the interviews. Take care, Jason


Sara July 11, 2017 at 9:27 am

I meant that the there’s been progress since January because your original post said there wasn’t. We should be seeing an update to the bulletin soon. Probably delayed because of the holidays, and this not being a priority to them.
I applied in April 2015 so I’m expecting them to get to my month soon (I hope).


Jason Dzubow July 14, 2017 at 6:38 am

If you have an asylum pending case and your fiancé is here, you can marry her and add her to your asylum case so that she gets a work permit (even if she is a citizen of a “safe” country like NZ). Take care, Jason


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