Biden’s Newly Proposed Rule Would Expedite Asylum Claims

Posted on 08/19/21

The Department of Homeland Security and Department of Justice jointly announced a proposed policy that would prioritize deportations, expedite the asylum process for thousands, and reduce the immigration court backlog. Announced on Wednesday, the policy aims to embolden humane approaches when dealing with immigrants who are fleeing persecution while alleviating the tremendous processing burden our immigration system has faced for the past several years. Ultimately, the proposed regulation would give asylum seekers confidence in obtaining a more expeditious decision on their case, while lightening the workload on immigration judges. The policy would not apply to unaccompanied minors or those undocumented immigrants who are currently residing in the United States.

The method the Biden administration hopes to employ to reduce the court backlog is by offering United States Citizenship and Immigration Service officials additional authority to review and decide applications for asylum, withholding of removal, and convention against torture (CAT) individuals. For many, it would bypass an already inflated court backlog. Streamlining and expeditiously adjudicating cases are at the center of the proposed rule change. Past attempts to overhaul the asylum process have faltered. Asylum seekers were especially bombarded by restrictions from the Trump administration in recent years.

In a statement posted on the Department of Justice’s website, Attorney General Merrick Garland emphasized the proposed changes would “make the asylum process fairer and more expeditious.” In recent years, the asylum process has grown increasingly drawn out. The need to improve the asylum process would ensure asylum seekers are able to justly make their claims heard. For those who arrived in the country without legitimate standing, ICE officers would be sure to deport them. Drawn-out asylum claims are disastrous for asylees and the immigration system. Asylum seekers who are initially denied by an officer would be able to seek a “de novo administrative review” by an immigration judge and further appeals may be heard if needed.

DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas added that the Asylum regulation changes would increase the ability of DHS and the DOJ to fairly consider asylum applications while prioritizing efficiency for such claims. Mayorkas added that “Individuals who are eligible will receive relief more swiftly, while those who are not eligible will be expeditiously removed. We are building an immigration system that is designed to ensure due process, respect human dignity, and promote equity.” The administration’s focus on overhauling the immigration system starts with promoting common sense and fair practices that would reduce the length of time cases are adjudicated and strengthen the speed at which deportations are carried out. 

Trump’s asylum backlog was in part generated by his administration’s desire to arrest as many migrants without improving the processing of claims. Even Trump himself passed comments seemingly okay with doing away with due process by getting rid of immigration courts. Adjudicating cases with additional judges and officials may have reduced court backlogs. The proposed rule follows a series of Biden policies that are aimed at improving the functionality of our immigration system while upholding moral and civilized approaches when dealing with migrants.

What is Asylum?

An individual may be eligible for asylum in the United States if they fled their home country in fear of persecution based on race, nationality, religion, or political opinion.

  • Affirmative route
      • An asylum seeker must present their case to a USCIS officer while being physically present in the United States. 
  • Defensive route
    • An asylum seeker must present their case to an immigration court before a judge. This path is used if you are planning on using the asylum claim as a defense during removal proceedings. 

Seeking Asylum in the United States can be quite daunting. Those fleeing treacherous conditions in their home country should understand the requirements before they apply for asylum. 

Are you or a loved one eligible to claim asylum in the United States?

Attorney James A. Welcome may be able to assist you in your asylum application. As an award-winning and top-rated Connecticut Immigration attorney, you can rest knowing knowledge will be by your side. Whether fleeing persecution or having the worry of returning to your native country due to violence or other issues, you may have a claim at asylum. Applying for asylum can be a convoluted process filled with puzzles while also requiring sufficient evidence to enforce your claim’s grounds. That is why an experienced immigration attorney can help ensure your case remains a priority.

Reach out to our immigration team today to see if you’re eligible to apply for asylum. Entrust our legal team that has represented thousands of immigrants in Connecticut and nationally with your immigration matter. We have successfully obtained favorable outcomes on our client’s behalf for decades and will be sure to deliver effective representation. 

Our offices are conveniently located throughout Connecticut including Waterbury, Danbury, and Norwalk. Our firm has also taken Covid-19 variant risks into account and will continue to offer video consultations as our main means of meeting immigrants for their initial consultation. During your consultation, you’ll be able to get a better understanding of your ability to claim asylum and what steps you may want to pursue. Get started today by calling (203) 753-7300 for support.