“Courage, then, my countrymen, our contest is not only whether we ourselves shall be free, but whether there shall be left to mankind an asylum on Earth for civil and religious liberty.”

– Samuel Adams
Address to Pennsylvania State House
August 1, 1776


The United States recognizes the right of asylum for individuals as specified by federal immigration law.

There are two basic requirements for an asylum seeker to meet. First, an asylum applicant must establish that he or she fears persecution from the government of their home country or individuals their home country government is either unwilling or unable to control. Second, the persecution must be on account of one of five protected grounds: race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or a particular social group.

Generally, a claim for asylum can be made upon entry to the United States, affirmatively to the USCIS once in the United States, or defensively in front of an Immigration Judge during removal proceedings.

Individual granted U.S. Asylum obtain special status to remain in the United States and are eligible to apply for a Green Card for themselves and family members.