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ASYLUM BASED ON SEXUAL ORIENTATION AND GENDER IDENTITY

Social groups have been regarded as one of the most important grounds for granting asylum, especially when they are based on unchangeable and immutable factors. Therefore several categories come under the definition of Social groups. 

With reference to some of the early decisions in Matter of Toboso-Alfonso, 20 I&N Dec. 819 (B.I.A. 1990), Pitcherskaia v. INS, 118 F.3d 641 (9th Cir. 1997), and Hernandez-Montiel v. INS, 225 F.3d 1084 (9th Cir. 2000) , the courts have recognized sexual orientation to be a social group , people who identity to be homosexual and transgender with special regard. 

Although in most of the scenarios, it has been noticed that most of the denials of asylum in the LGBTQ community stems from issues relating to inability to establish the alleged facts or from legal technicalities, but if any individual is to face persecution on account of their sexual orientation or gender identity, here are some of the documents one is required to provide during the hearing : 

 

  • Details of the incident of harm during the asylum application and testimony: Name, Date, Facts, and Reasoning for believing the occurrence to be persecution on account of being a part of the LGBT+ community.  
  • Evidence of membership in the LGBTQ+ community to be regarded as a member of the social group. 
  • Information about the native country and proof of ostracization or brutality faced there by the individual owing to their gender orientation or sexuality. ( One can go through the U.S. Department of State ” Country Reports on Human Rights ” for information to support their claim. )

All of the documents, applications, and testimonials must be plausible, comprehensive, and concordant to the facts claimed to establish one’s plea firmly to the Immigration judge or officer in question. It will increase the chances of their asylum being granted. 

 

In order to prove the LGBTQ+ identity, it is necessary to submit copies of the documents relevant to their identity and bring the originals during the hearing. Specific examples of relevant documents are : 

 

  • New birth certificates with their revised gender identity or orientation.  
  • A marriage certificate proving matrimony with someone of their preferred gender or sexual orientation. 
  • Memberships in recognized LGBTQ+ organizations. 
  • Sworn affidavits from people who confirm the gender identity or sexual orientation of the person. 

 

The questions from the judge or office arising in this aspect must be appropriate, meaningful, and relevant to the concern in hand. 

 

For more information, it is most advisable to consult with our Immigration attorneys who specialize in Asylum laws and serving the queer community. We promise to be of service to you and fulfill our duties to give you the justice you are looking for. 

 

BASIC OVERVIEW OF WHAT THE U.S. IMMIGRATION LAW DEALS WITH

Immigration Law in the United States is a wide arena to deal with as it encompasses various situations a person might have to encounter relating to traveling from a different country.

 

The most common scenarios and streams of Immigration Law are :

 

  • Visiting the country: Visitors of the United States often come due to the purposes of tourism or meeting loved ones or with medical needs or for social meetings or events.

They go through a process of proving their eligibility for the required visas and go through the application process. For this category, the visitors require a B-2 visitor visa.

For Business purposes, the visitors are required to apply for a B-1 business visa.

 

 

  • Employment in the U.S.: For obtaining access to employment in the United States, it is important for the employee to gain the status of a permanent resident to be able to cater to any job opportunity in any part of the country. But in cases of not qualifying for permanent resident status, they are to apply for a temporary work visa.

 

 

  • Green Card Acquirement: The Permanent Resident Card i.e. the Green Card is given to immigrants or parolees but it has some of the most important criteria to abide by in order to obtain permanent citizenship through this card.

 

It is provided mainly to highly skilled employees and employers, immediate relatives of the citizens of the U.S.A., eligible refugees and seekers of asylum, long time residents. A limited number of Green Card visas are issued and as the process is a tedious and complex one thereby only selected immigrants are eligible for it.

 

  • Naturalization: The process of Naturalization i.e. becoming a naturalized citizen is an extensive procedure with heaps of paperwork, background confirmation, interview, and testing, ending with the mandatory oath of allegiance. Naturalization comes with similar benefits as that of a natural-born citizen of the U.S. thereby this process is a popular one.

 

  • Process of Border entry: The cross-border entry rules might be a cumbersome process but the correct consultancy and the right procedure make the experience painless. The process is incorporated with the subsection of ” Border Entry Rules ” which includes all the border crossing formalities with additional border entry information. The overview mainly is applicable on
  • Lawful Permanent Citizens who are Green Card Holders.
  • Citizens from foreign countries
  • Citizens of Canada and Mexico
  • Trust Traveler programs

 

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