Asylum Lawyers in the UK: An Overview
Asylum law provides protection to those fleeing persecution or serious harm in their home countries. Asylum solicitors play a critical role in the application process by providing legal advice and representation to asylum seekers, especially as the process is complex.
Immigration lawyers provide legal aid but also invaluable support for vulnerable asylum seekers who may have trauma, language barriers, or are unfamiliar with the UK system.
The lawyer’s role is to advocate for and advise the asylum seeker through the legal process. They help the applicant understand their rights and options under the law. Lawyers assist with the asylum application, gathering evidence and supporting documents, and preparing their clients for interviews.
- Asylum Lawyers in the UK: An Overview
- The Asylum Process in the UK
- Eligibility criteria for asylum seekers in the UK
- What Documents will I need?
- Legal Options for Asylum Seekers
- Benefits of Using an Asylum Solicitor
- Rights and Entitlements of Asylum Applicants in the UK
- Choosing the Right Asylum Solicitor
- How Can London Immigration Lawyers Help
The Asylum Process in the UK
You should apply for asylum as soon as possible when you arrive in the UK, at the Asylum Screening Unit.
The asylum application process involves:
- An initial screening interview where you provide basic personal history and have your fingerprints and photo taken.
- Being placed on immigration bail, requires you to stay at a registered address and potentially report to authorities on a weekly or monthly basis.
- Completing a written one-stop notice document or preliminary information questionnaire form to provide details about your asylum claim.
- An in-person interview to fully explain why you are seeking asylum and provide supporting evidence of persecution. You can bring a lawyer to this interview
You will also need to provide documents such as
- Police registration certificate
- ID documents such as an identity card, birth certificate, marriage certificate, or school records
Bring anything else you think could help your case. If you do not have the required ID, talk to your asylum solicitor right away for advice.
If approved, you get permission to stay in the UK for 5 years (called Leave to Remain). You can then apply to settle. If you don’t qualify as a refugee, you may get permission to stay for humanitarian reasons. After 5 years you can apply to settle. You may also get 2.5 years’ leave for human rights reasons.
Eligibility criteria for asylum seekers in the UK
To be eligible to claim asylum you must show that you cannot safely live in your home country because you fear persecution there. This must be because of your:
- political opinion
- or other social, cultural or political factors that put you at risk
What Documents will I need?
It is important asylum applicants provide supporting evidence. These include:
- Passports or ID card
- Proof of dangerous country conditions
- Police records
- Medical/psychological evaluations
- Birth certificates or marriage licenses
- Membership of unions or organisations
- Witness statements
- Copies of threatening messages
- Documentation of injuries
- Proof of address
Family Reunion Programme
Some countries allow refugees to bring close family members to live with them through family reunification programs. Refugees can sponsor minor children, spouses, parents, and other eligible relatives to immigrate and reunite. There are requirements around the timing of relationships and having enough money to support family members once reunited.
People looking for asylum facing serious threats may get humanitarian protection if they don’t legally qualify as refugees. This applies to risks like the death penalty, torture, or cruel treatment in their home country. Those granted protection usually get a short-term residence permit, work authorisation, and aid. After several years, they can often apply to stay permanently.
Resettlement programs involve transferring refugees from an asylum country to another
country that has agreed to admit them and assist them in becoming permanent residents. This helps share the responsibility and ease the burden on countries near conflict areas.
The Gateway Protection Program
This programme is run by the Home Office and UNHCR to resettle extremely vulnerable asylum seekers in the UK. To apply, refugees must apply directly through the UNHCR. The UNHCR will pass eligible applications to the Home Office. Accepted refugees get permanent residence in the UK immediately.
Discretionary Leave to Remain
If your application for refugee status is not successful, you can apply for Discretionary Leave to Remain alongside your application for Humanitarian Protection. Discretionary leave provides temporary permission to stay, allowing for a reevaluation of the need for ongoing protection.
Benefits of Using an Asylum Solicitor
Getting asylum in the UK can be complicated but working with an experienced asylum solicitor gives you the best chance for success. They can help you understand your rights, provide legal aid, gather evidence, prepare for interviews, and appeal decisions if needed.
An asylum lawyer can:
- Help you schedule an appointment
- Assist in writing formal statements
- Assess the strength of your case
- Apply for your release if detained
- Prepare and represent you if you appeal
- Advise on next steps
- Get medical reports or expert information to support your claim
Seek legal advice with an affordable solicitor you trust. With strong legal guidance, you have a better opportunity to gain asylum support in the UK.
Rights and Entitlements of Asylum Applicants in the UK
Those looking for asylum have basic rights to healthcare, education, employment, and social welfare benefits. They do not have unlimited access to public funds or the full rights of citizens. However, they are entitled to essential services and support to meet basic needs during the application process.
All asylum applicants can register with a GP and receive free emergency and essential healthcare from the NHS. Children can attend state-funded primary and secondary schools.
Those looking for asylum do not have permission to work in the UK, but there are exceptions. You can apply if you’ve waited over 12 months for a decision on your asylum case or if you were denied asylum, and there’s been no response to your submissions filed more than 12 months ago.
While waiting for a decision, you may be eligible for accommodation like a flat, house, hostel, or bed and breakfast. If there’s no accommodation, you might be held in an immigration detention centre. You will receive a weekly allowance for each person in your household for essentials like food, clothing and toiletries.
Choosing the Right Asylum Solicitor
Selecting the right asylum solicitor is an important step for a successful application. London Immigration Lawyers have over 15 years of experience specifically helping asylum seekers in the UK. Our expertise strengthens claims and secures protection.
Key factors when choosing a solicitor include:
- Specialisation in asylum law. Our solicitors have in-depth knowledge of constantly changing policies.
- Strong record of successful cases. We have multiple client testimonials and high success rates.
- Multilingual support. Our team can communicate in your native language or provide interpreters.
- Realistic assessment. Our ethical lawyers will give an honest opinion on your chances and eligibility.
- Affordable fees. We offer transparent pricing, legal aid assistance, and flexible payment plans.
Need support for your asylum claim or appeal? Our immigration solicitors at London Immigration Lawyers are the best asylum lawyers in the UK.
Whether you’re an adult, a minor, or a family member, our team is well-equipped to handle asylum claims. And if asylum isn’t an option, we’re here to guide you on humanitarian protection or other options for you to remain in the UK.
If you require assistance with your asylum claim or humanitarian protection, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team. Call us on 020 4502 8582 or contact us online. You can trust us to handle your case with expertise and care.
Last modified on December 27th, 2023 at 12:17 am
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