Super Lawyers
Expertise.com
yelp badge
Lawyers of Distinction
Pasadena Top Attorneys 2022
American Immigration Lawyers Association

DHS and DOJ Issue Rule to Efficiently and Fairly Process Asylum Claims

Thomas M. Lee
Asylum

On March 24, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of Justice (DOJ) are issuing a rule to improve and expedite processing of asylum claims made by noncitizens subject to expedited removal, ensuring that those who are eligible for asylum are granted relief quickly, and those who are not are promptly removed.

The rule authorizes asylum officers within U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to consider the asylum applications of individuals subject to expedited removal who assert a fear of persecution or torture and pass the required credible fear screening. Currently, such cases are decided only by immigration judges within the Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review.

Due to existing court backlogs, the process for hearing and deciding these asylum cases currently takes several years on average. When fully implemented, the reforms and new efficiencies will shorten the process to several months for most asylum applicants covered by this rule.

“The current system for handling asylum claims at our borders has long needed repair,” said Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas. “Through this rule, we are building a more functional and sensible asylum system to ensure that individuals who are eligible will receive protection more swiftly, while those who are not eligible will be rapidly removed. We will process claims for asylum or other humanitarian protection in a timely and efficient manner while ensuring due process.”

“This rule advances our efforts to ensure that asylum claims are processed fairly, expeditiously, and consistent with due process,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland. “It will help reduce the burden on our immigration courts, protect the rights of those fleeing persecution and violence, and enable immigration judges to issue removal orders when appropriate. We look forward to receiving additional input from stakeholders and the public on this important rule.”

Under the rule, individuals who receive a positive credible fear determination will receive a timely interview with an asylum officer to elicit all relevant and useful information about their asylum claim. Following an interview, USCIS will decide whether to grant asylum, and, if necessary, determine the applicant’s eligibility for withholding of removal or protection under the Convention Against Torture (CAT).

Any individual who is not granted asylum by USCIS will be referred for a removal proceeding before an immigration judge. The rule establishes streamlined procedures for these removal proceedings, designed to promote efficient resolution of the case.

The rule will not apply to unaccompanied children, and it will only apply to individuals who are placed into expedited removal proceedings on or after its effective date. The rule will be implemented in phases, starting with a limited number of individuals, and subsequently expanding as the USCIS Asylum Division receives additional resources and builds capacity.

This rule modifies the notice of proposed rulemaking’s (NPRM) proposal in response to public comments received following the NPRM issued by DHS and Justice in August 2021. The rule will be effective 60 days after publication in the Federal Register. The Departments encourage further public comment on the rule during the 60-day comment period for the Departments to consider. Details for submitting public comments are in the rule.

Please note that the information provided on this website is for general information purposes only and is not to be construed nor relied upon as legal advice nor the formation of an attorney-client relationship. For a free consultation with Attorney Thomas M. Lee, please contact us.

Client Reviews

Mr. Lee is extremely knowledgeable when it comes to employment law. I was amazed by his tenacity and skill and in the end, I walked away with a settlement I was very happy about. I highly recommended him to anyone.

- Sarah G.

Earlier this year I was very confused about a legal employer/employee situation and needed professional advice. In my desire to move quickly on my situation I spent hours signing up for legal services (e.g. legal shield...

- Richard H., Los Angeles, CA

Hands down, the best immigration lawyer in Los Angeles that you could possibly find. Period. After an extremely poor experience with another law firm, which had come highly recommended by one of my company's attorneys...

- Robert K., Beverly Hills, CA

My old company was breaking some labor laws and I decided to look for some legal advice. I went to Tom to see what course of action I can take and when we sat down to talk about the details, I decided to hire him and his...

- Ethan Y., Orange, CA

It's quite rare to find a lawyer that sincerely cares about your best interest. Most employment lawyers are extremely hungry for business which makes them naturally have their best interest not mine. However, Tom truly...

- Jen T., Central LA, Los Angeles, CA

Get in Touch

  1. 1 Free Consultation
  2. 2 Decades of Experience
  3. 3 High Success Record
Fill out the contact form or call us at (213) 251-5533 to schedule your free consultation.

Leave Us a Message