Media reporting on the treatment of migrants at the southern border has called attention to the US asylum process. Many don’t realize, however, that there are also many non-detained asylum applicants in the US from all over the world. Many have been waiting years for their cases to be processed. Some of these applicants filed for asylum at the border or in deportation proceedings, while others entered the US with a visa or may hold some alternative immigration status concurrent with their asylum applications.

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services sometimes provides temporary work authorization for asylum applicants, some of whom might be able to file for a green card with their employer. A word of caution is immediately needed here. One should never file for asylum before checking with a reputable asylum lawyer regarding eligibility and the impact of filing in their particular situation. For some people, asylum filings can trigger quick deportation proceedings with no work authorization available. Be aware, asylum is not available for all people who feel unsafe in their country. Asylum law only protects persecution on account of particular grounds (e.g., race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group).

To determine whether an asylum applicant’s employer can file for the applicant’s green card, immigration attorneys examine many factors, including: whether the applicant entered the US legally; whether they have any gaps in their status; whether or how long they have worked without authorization; the availability of waivers to forgive any immigration law violations; the status of the asylum claim; the employer’s willingness to participate in the process; and whether the employer can easily fill the position with a willing and able US worker. One small detail can change a person’s eligibility and advisability of filing for a green card through an employer; therefore, asylum applicants with work authorization should schedule a consultation with a reputable asylum immigration lawyer where the employer can be available to attend in person or by phone. For some applicants, the asylum application can move so slowly that it may be faster to obtain their green card via their employer.

SPEAK WITH AN ATLANTA IMMIGRATION ATTORNEY ABOUT YOUR IMMIGRATION OPTIONS

At Antonini and Cohen Immigration Law Group, we routinely help our clients navigate concurrent immigration processes in different areas of immigration. We have a broad depth of knowledge and experience within our immigration team. To schedule an appointment with one of our immigration attorneys, contact us online or by calling 404-850-9394.

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