The U.S. government allows immigrants to seek asylum in Georgia or any other state. Sometimes, immigrants begin the process of application from abroad. Other times, people arrive at U.S. borders asking for protection, perhaps because they fled poverty, violence or persecution in their countries of origin. If you are hoping that the government will grant you status as a refugee, you’ll want to know as much about the process as possible.

It’s also a good idea to connect with someone who is well versed in U.S. immigration law, in case any legal obstacles arise. As someone living and working in the United States under protected status, you may also be eligible to apply for permanent residency. There are various types of asylum, such as affirmative asylum and defensive asylum. For instance, if you currently reside in an immigration detention center, you would need to apply for defensive asylum.

Proving your need

As with most immigration processes, you must be eligible for asylum and must prove that you meet all the application requirements to request status as a refugee. If you are not currently in removal proceedings, you may be able to navigate the affirmative asylum process and file an application with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services department. 

Immigration officials will need proof that you have sought protection because of past persecution or because you have a well-founded fear that you are in danger if you stay in your home country. Your personal testimony can greatly affect the ultimate outcome of your situation.

The green card factor

When the U.S. government grants you asylum, you gain many privileges. In addition to being able to obtain gainful employment and live in Georgia or any other state, you may also be able to apply for a green card after a year has passed. You may also be able to apply for a Social Security Card, Medicaid and Refugee Medical Assistance, as well.

If legal status problems arise

Many immigrants say they live in fear of losing their legal statuses. Those who enter the United States without proper paperwork and later request asylum may face more difficult challenges than those who began their applications from abroad.

Especially if you are navigating the defensive asylum process, you may encounter serious complications along the way. There are experienced immigration law attorneys who are equipped to provide support to help immigrants overcome obstacles that may be impeding their ability to stay in the United States.