Applicants petitioning for political asylum type of immigration waiver often have been exposed to extreme deprivation, severe abuse, and possibly even torture in their home country. Frequently, these mistreatments are related to a political, religious, and/or ethnic persecution. Living your life in your home country becomes sufficiently intolerable or painful, that the individual flees his or her country to the United States and files a political asylum claim.
What is the Purpose of our session with you?
Immigration evaluations in asylum cases are intended to collect information about the mistreatment and to examine how these circumstances have impacted the immigrant psychologically. Psychological problems are most likely to develop as a result of abuse, such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders (PTSD), severe anxiety, and/or depression.
If your immigration case involves political asylum, it is important to evaluate the extent and severity of your original trauma, whether you suffer from psychological symptoms after arriving in the United States, and how long-lasting the psychological effects may be.
In addition to legal aid, an immigration evaluation therapist can help you communicate and document the mental health aspects of your case.
In what ways does asylum help people fleeing persecution?
Those granted asylum are protected from being sent back to their country of origin, can work in the United States, may apply for a Social Security card, may request permission to travel overseas, and can petition to bring relatives to the United States. Asylees may be eligible for certain government programs, including Medicaid and Refugee Medical Assistance.
Asylees can apply for lawful permanent resident status (a green card) after a year. Once an individual becomes a permanent resident, he or she must wait four years before applying for citizenship.