Lawsuit Challenges One-Year Asylum Deadline

Lawsuit Challenges One-Year Asylum Deadline

Under current federal immigration law, there is a one-year deadline in which an individual can apply for asylum in the United States. This deadline begins to run as soon as the individual enters the country. If the individual misses the deadline, then he or she is ineligible for asylum, with only a few exceptions. One of the biggest problems with this deadline is that immigrants are not aware of it, and immigration officials do not tell immigrants about the deadline. The large backlog in immigration courts also contributes to the problem, as immigrants must apply for asylum in open court, which is a bureaucratic barrier to seeking asylum in itself. The larger problem with this requirement is that many immigrants don’t even have a court hearing scheduled until after the one-year deadline has passed. Due to these barriers, immigrants often miss the one-year asylum deadline, leaving them with no recourse and facing deportation. On June 30, 2016, four individuals seeking asylum from Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, and the Dominican Republic, filed a class action lawsuit challenging the one-year asylum deadline in the District Court for the Western District of Washington. More specifically, the suit challenges the failure of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to advise immigrants of the one-year asylum deadline, as well as their failure to adopt procedures ensuring that immigrants are able to file for asylum prior to the deadline. Essentially, the plaintiffs allege that due to the government’s procedures with respect to asylum, individuals become ineligible for asylum and may very well be deported to the countries from which they fled due to persecution. Individuals who believe that they qualify for asylum or have another valid deportation defense need an experienced California immigration lawyer who can assist them with this often-complex process. At Landerholm Immigration, A.P.C., we know how to stand up for the rights of those who are legally entitled to remain in the U.S. Call us today at (510) 756-4468 and schedule an appointment with one of our deportation defense lawyers, and learn how we can assist you.
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