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Asylum - Frequently Asked Questions


Will I get a work permit after applying for Asylum?

Asylum applicants cannot apply for employment authorization at the same time they apply for Asylum.

  • You will be authorized to work in the United States if you are granted Asylum and as long as you remain in Asylum status
  • You are also eligible to apply for employment authorization if you are given a recommended approval or conditional grant of Asylum
  • You can also apply for work authorization before a decision is made on your claim if 150 days has passed since you filed your complete application with the Service Center and no decision has been made on your application. The USCIS has 30 days to either grant or deny your request for employment

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Can I travel outside the U.S. after applying for Asylum?

Yes, you may travel outside the U.S. after filing your Asylum application.

  • If you are applying for Asylum and want to travel outside the U.S., you must receive advance permission before you leave the U.S. in order to return to the U.S. This advance permission is called Advance Parole.
  • If you do not apply for Advance Parole before you leave the country, you will be presumed to have abandoned your application with the USCIS and you may not be permitted to return to the U.S.
  • If you obtain advance parole and return to your country of feared persecution, you will be presumed to have abandoned your Asylum request, unless you can show compelling reasons for the return
  • If your application for Asylum is approved, you may apply for a
    Refugee Travel Document. This document will allow you to travel abroad and return to the U.S.
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