USCRI: U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants

Asylum Research

General Asylum Information

TVPRA Changes to Asylum for Unaccompanied Alien Children

  • USCIS Questions and Answers on Updated Procedures for Determination of Initial Jurisdiction over Asylum Applications Filed by Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC), June 10, 2013
  • Memorandum from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to the Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman (CIS Ombudsman) re: Ensuring a Fair and Effective Asylum Process for Unaccompanied Children, April 11, 2013 
  • Memorandum from the Chief of USCIS Asylum Office to Asylum Office Staff on TVPRA Provisions, March 25, 2009
  • ICE Instruction Sheet for Unaccompanied Alien Children filing an I-589 Asylum Application

Guidelines for Immigration Court Cases Involving Unaccompanied Alien Children

Asylum Cases Adjudicated by USCIS

Social Visibility

  • Memo drafted in May 2007 by Holland & Knight LLP and University of Pennsylvania School of Law Immigration Clinic analyzing how social groups are defined in light of the new requirements under In re A-M-E and J-G-U.
  • UNHCR Amicus Curiae, Matter of Thomas et al (January 2007), Executive Office for Immigration Review, Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA)
    • Brief of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees as Amicus Curiae to the BIA to clarify its position on how to define a social group
    • A key argument made in the brief is that "there is no requirement that a particular social group be readily visible to society at large"

Exceptions to the One-Year Filing Deadline

  • Generally, asylum applicants must file their applications within one year of arrival in the United States. 
  • Exceptions may be granted if the applicant can show changed or extraordinary circumstances that are directly related to the delay in filing and files within a reasonable period of time. 
  • This July 18, 2007 brief by pro bono counsel argues for an exception to the one-year filing deadline on account of a child's minority status and lack of awareness that persecution she experienced in her home country was relevant to asylum. The Immigration Judge granted the child asylum in this case.
  • In this redacted version of a March 29, 2013 BIA remand, the Board of Immigration Appeals assesses youth and other factors as extraordinary circumstances that should be considered by the Immigration Judge in determining whether an individual has satisfied the 1-year requirement.
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