Asylum Lawyers

Asylum lawyers are professionals that specialize in helping people who are trying to get asylum through all of the many steps of the procedure. They not only give asylum seekers important legal advice and help, but they also act as a link between them and the people who decide their destiny.

Asylum is a fundamental human right that gives people who are running away from persecution, violence, or other major risks in their own countries a safe place to stay. It is one of the most important parts of international humanitarian law. It gives people in desperate need a chance to live in safety and with dignity. The process of getting asylum is complicated and varies from country to country. It usually involves a series of legal steps and eligibility tests to see if a person is eligible for protection under international and national laws.

Asylum seekers who don’t know the language, legal system, or cultural norms of their host nation may find it hard to get through the complicated and often scary asylum procedure. At this point, the job of an asylum lawyer becomes very important.

Key aspects of the asylum process in five different countries

CountryApplication FeeAvg. Processing TimeEmployment RightsAccess to HealthcareRight to Family Reunification
United States$06 months – 2 yearsYes, with permitLimitedYes, under specific conditions
Canada$01 – 3 yearsYes, with permitYesYes, under specific conditions
Germany$06 months – 2 yearsYes, with permitYesYes, under specific conditions
United Kingdom$06 months – 2 yearsYes, with permitYesYes, under specific conditions
Australia$06 months – 3 yearsYes, with permitYesYes, under specific conditions


This table summarises each country’s asylum application expenses, typical processing timeframes, work rights, access to healthcare, and the right to a family reunion. Remember that these are estimates and are subject to change. For precise and up-to-date information, it is critical to consult the immigration authorities of the individual nation.

A step-by-step process for an individual seeking asylum

StepDescriptionDurationResponsible Party
1? Arrival in the host countryN/AAsylum seeker
2? Submit the asylum applicationAs soon as possibleAsylum seeker
3? Attend the initial asylum interviewDepends on the countryAsylum seeker
4? Asylum office reviews applications and conducts background checksVariesAsylum office
5? Receive a decision on the asylum applicationVariesAsylum office
6(Optional) ? Appeal the decision if the application is deniedWithin appeal deadlineAsylum seeker
7⚖️ Receive the final decision after the appeal (if applicable)VariesAppellate body
8? Apply for a residence permit if the asylum application is approvedAs requiredAsylum seeker
9? Apply for work authorization and other necessary permitsAs requiredAsylum seeker
10? Begin the process of integration, including language courses and educationOngoingAsylum seeker

Understanding Asylum Law

Asylum is a type of international legal protection given to those who have left their home country because they have a good reason to fear that they will be persecuted.

Definition of Asylum and Its Legal Basis

International law is where the idea of asylum comes from. Several important accords and legal frameworks spell out the rights and duties of both asylum seekers and the governments that protect them.

  1. The 1951 Refugee Convention

The 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees is the primary international legal instrument that establishes the definition of a refugee and outlines the rights of individuals granted asylum. The Convention also sets forth the principle of non-refoulment, which prohibits countries from returning asylum seekers to places where their lives or freedom would be at risk.

  1. The 1967 Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees

The 1967 Protocol is an addition to the 1951 Refugee Convention. It says that refugees can come from any area of the world, not only Europe and that the 1951 Convention is no longer limited by time. The Protocol also restates what a refugee is and the idea of not being sent back.

  1. National Laws and Regulations

In addition to the above-mentioned international accords, each country has its own set of national laws and rules regulating asylum proceedings. These rules might differ greatly between countries and have an influence.

The Key Elements of a Successful Asylum Claim

Navigating the intricate asylum-seeking process may be difficult for both asylum applicants and their advocates. To increase the odds of a favorable conclusion, it is critical to grasp the basic components of a legitimate asylum application. The three basic requirements that must be satisfied for a claim to be recognized as legitimate under international law are outlined in this article.

Well-Founded Fear of Persecution

The first, and certainly most important, a component of a successful asylum petition is proving a legitimate fear of persecution. This implies that the asylum applicant must demonstrate a real and reasonable fear of persecution if they return to their native country. This apprehension must be founded on objective conditions, such as prior persecution or genuine threats of future damage. It is vital to remember that generalized violence or disturbance in the country of origin is not enough to justify an asylum claim; the fear must be personal to the individual and their specific circumstances.

Persecution Based on Race, Religion, Nationality, Political Opinion, or Membership in a Particular Social Group

The second requirement for a valid asylum claim is that the asylum seeker’s persecution is based on one or more of the following grounds: race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a certain social group. This implies that the persecution must be directly tied to one of these groups. A person who has been targeted because of their religious views or political activity, for example, would qualify, but someone who has endured broad criminal violence unconnected to these reasons would not. To build a strong case, asylum seekers and their defenders must clearly prove the link between the persecution and one of these protected grounds.

Inability or Unwillingness to Seek Protection from One’s Own Country

The third and last requirement for a valid asylum claim is proof that the asylum applicant is unable or unwilling to seek protection in their own country. This might be due to a number of factors, including the government’s inability to offer proper protection or its direct participation in the persecution. Asylum applicants must give proof that their government is unable or unwilling to protect them from the persecution they fear. Documentation of prior attempts to seek protection, comments from witnesses, or reports from human rights organizations detailing the government’s role in or incapacity to prevent persecution may be included.

Finally, the capacity of the asylum seeker to establish a well-founded fear of persecution based on one of the protected grounds, as well as their inability or reluctance to seek protection from their own country, is critical to a successful asylum claim. Asylum seekers and their advocates may considerably increase their prospects of gaining the protection they sorely need by knowing these crucial factors and accumulating sufficient evidence to support the claim.

Preparing for the Asylum Case

To successfully represent an asylum applicant, considerable preparation and a complete comprehension of the individual’s particular circumstances are required. This article outlines the major phases in preparing an asylum case, from conducting a client interview to studying the country’s circumstances and writing the application.

Client Interview and Assessment

  • Building Trust with the Client: It is critical to establish a strong relationship and trust with the client in order to acquire accurate and thorough information about their experiences and circumstances. This may be accomplished by providing a secure and compassionate workplace, attentively listening, and displaying cultural understanding. Building trust is an ongoing process that will enable the client to feel comfortable revealing sensitive and perhaps painful aspects of their history.
  • Gathering and Evaluating Evidence: It is critical to collect any relevant evidence that might aid support the asylum application during the client interview. Personal testimony, witness testimonies, medical records, and other material relating to previous persecution or threats may be included. Evaluating the trustworthiness and dependability of the evidence is also crucial since discrepancies or a lack of corroboration might undermine the claim.
  • Identifying Potential Legal Arguments: It is critical to determine the legal grounds that will form the basis of the asylum application based on the facts gathered during the interview. Determine which protected ground(s) the persecution is based on and how the client’s unique circumstances fulfill the conditions for a valid claim.

Country Conditions Research

  • Importance of Understanding the Client’s Country of Origin: Building a good asylum case requires a deep grasp of the client’s country of origin. Knowledge of the political, social, and cultural environment can assist advocates in identifying patterns of persecution, corroborating the client’s evidence, and demonstrating the client’s incapacity or reluctance to seek protection from their native country.
  • Reliable Sources of Information: It is critical to rely on trustworthy and up-to-date sources of information while investigating national circumstances. Reports from government agencies, international organizations, human rights organizations, and academic institutions may be included. News stories, expert testimony, and country-specific databases can also give useful information on the circumstances in the client’s home country.
  • Using Country Conditions to Support the Claim: Country circumstances research can help to enhance an asylum claim by putting the client’s experiences into context. For example, if the client has been persecuted because of their political convictions, research can assist in demonstrating a pattern of government crackdowns on dissent or the targeting of certain political parties. Similarly, research can assist in demonstrating the incidence of violence or prejudice against a specific social group, providing validity to the client’s fear of persecution.
  • Drafting the Asylum Application and Supporting: The final step in preparing for an asylum case is to write the asylum application and gather supporting paperwork. This includes filling out the necessary documents and drafting a thorough personal statement.
Iryna Berenstein
Associated Partner
Mrs. Berenstein is a distinguished and outstanding lawyer with profound experience and exceptional legal knowledge in the field of International Private Law, Financial Law, Corporate Law, investment regulation, Compliance, Data Protection, and Reputation Management.

Asylum Lawyers FAQ

How much does a US asylum lawyer cost?
The cost of an asylum lawyer in the United States varies, although it normally ranges from $1,500 to $5,000 or more, based on criteria like as the lawyer's expertise, the intricacy of the case, and the geographical location.
Do I need a lawyer to file asylum in USA?
While having a lawyer is not legally needed when filing for asylum in the United States, it is strongly advised since a lawyer can assist navigate the complex procedure, build a solid case, and boost the odds of success.
How can I get asylum in Cyprus?
To seek for asylum in Cyprus, you must fill out an application and submit it to the Asylum Service, which is in charge of processing asylum petitions. You should apply as soon as you arrive in the nation, including thorough details regarding your fear of persecution in your native country.
How long can asylum case take?
The length of an asylum case varies greatly based on criteria such as the nation of origin, the intricacy of the case, and the number of applications on file. It may take a few months in some circumstances, while it may take many years in others.
How much is asylum application fee?
There is no charge to file an asylum application in the United States. (Form I-589). However, expenses for connected applications, such as work permits or travel papers, may apply. Fees and requirements for asylum petitions may differ in different countries, thus it is important to check the relevant country's immigration authorities for correct information.
How long does asylum process take in Cyprus?
The duration of the asylum process in Cyprus might range from several months to a few years. The intricacy of the case, the backlog of applications, and the availability of resources to handle claims are all factors that may affect processing timelines.
Can an asylum seeker be deported from Cyprus?
If an asylum seeker's claim is denied and they have exhausted all appeal procedures, they may be deported from Cyprus. Cyprus, on the other hand, is bound by the principle of non-refoulment, which forbids the government from sending asylum seekers to a country where their life or freedom would be jeopardized owing to persecution.
Can an asylum seeker buy a house in Cyprus?
The eligibility of an asylum seeker to purchase a home in Cyprus is determined by their legal status as well as the country's particular property ownership legislation. Individuals with subsidiary protection and recognized refugees are more likely to be allowed to own property. However, restrictions are subject to change, therefore it is important to check the appropriate authorities for the most up-to-date information on property ownership requirements for asylum seekers and refugees.