Ayuda legal para TPS Venezolano

¿Qué es el TPS venezolano? Preguntas Frecuentes

¿Qué es el TPS venezolano? Preguntas Frecuentes 

En respuesta a las condiciones humanitarias, de seguridad, políticas y ambientales de Venezuela que impiden que sus ciudadanos regresen de manera segura a su país, el Secretario de Seguridad Nacional, Alejandro N. Mayorkas, anunció el 20 de septiembre de 2023 la redesignación y extensión del Estatus de Protección Temporal (TPS) venezolano por 18 meses. Esta redesignación permite a los beneficiarios existentes y a los nuevos solicitantes elegibles solicitar o mantener el TPS. 

¿Qué es el TPS? 

El Estatus de Protección Temporal (TPS) es un estatus migratorio temporal otorgado por el Secretario de Seguridad Nacional a extranjeros elegibles que se encuentran en los Estados Unidos y que no pueden regresar de manera segura a su país debido a conflictos armados, un desastre ambiental, una epidemia u otras condiciones extraordinarias y temporales. El TPS brinda protección temporal contra la deportación y autorización de empleo en los EE. UU. durante el período designado. Es importante tener en cuenta que el TPS no conduce a la residencia permanente o la ciudadanía. 

¿Qué es el TPS venezolano? 

El 20 de septiembre de 2023, el Departamento de Seguridad Nacional anunció la redesignación y extensión del TPS venezolano por 18 meses. 

  • Para los titulares actuales del TPS venezolano, presentes en los EE. UU. antes del 31 de julio de 2023, esta redesignación proporciona protección temporal continua contra la deportación y autorización de empleo. Esta extensión otorga a los beneficiarios existentes el TPS hasta el 10 de septiembre de 2025.  
  • Para los nuevos solicitantes de TPS venezolano, presentes en los EE. UU. a partir del 31 de julio de 2023, esta redesignación proporcionará a los solicitantes aprobados protección contra la deportación y autorización de empleo hasta el 2 de abril de 2025. 

¿Cuándo debo solicitar el TPS venezolano? 

Puede solicitar el TPS venezolano durante el período de registro determinado por el USCIS. 

  • Para los nuevos solicitantes de TPS venezolano, el período de solicitud comienza el 3 de octubre de 2023 y permanecerá vigente durante 18 meses, finalizando el 2 de abril de 2025.  
  • Los titulares de TPS bajo la designación de Venezuela 2021 deben haberse reinscrito durante el período de re-registro de 60 días que se realizó del 10 de enero de 2024 al 10 de marzo de 2024. 

¿Cuáles son los requisitos para el TPS venezolano? 

Para presentar una solicitud de TPS, los solicitantes deben presentar pruebas de identidad/nacionalidad, pruebas de fecha de entrada y pruebas de residencia continua. 

Ejemplos incluyen: 

  • Identidad/Nacionalidad: copia de su certificado de nacimiento, copia de su pasaporte y/o cualquier documento de identidad nacional que tenga su fotografía.  
  • Fecha de Entrada: copia de su pasaporte, Registro de Entrada/Salida I-94; o copias de documentos especificados en la sección de Residencia Continua a continuación.  
  • Residencia Continua: contratos de arrendamiento, facturas de servicios públicos, registros médicos, correspondencia enviada por correo, cartas de iglesias/organizaciones que confirmen que han estado presentes en los EE. UU., etc. El requisito de residencia continua comienza el 31 de julio de 2023.  

Todos los documentos deben incluir las fechas apropiadas y el nombre del solicitante. 

¿Cuánto tiempo se tarda en recibir el TPS venezolano después de presentar la solicitud? 

Los tiempos de procesamiento varían significativamente. Los solicitantes de TPS venezolano pueden esperar típicamente entre 6 y 18 meses. 

Para los tiempos de procesamiento más actualizados, revise el sitio web del USCIS. 

¿Cuáles son los beneficios del TPS venezolano?  

  • Las personas que obtienen el TPS no pueden ser removidas de los Estados Unidos y no pueden ser detenidas por su estatus migratorio. 
  • Los beneficiarios de TPS pueden obtener autorización de empleo (EAD) y trabajar legalmente en los Estados Unidos.  
  • Los beneficiarios de TPS pueden solicitar autorización de viaje y ser autorizados para viajar sin poner en peligro su estatus de TPS. 

¿Puedo viajar con TPS Venezolano? 

Puede recibir autorización de viaje si tiene un caso de TPS pendiente o si se le ha otorgado TPS. Para solicitar autorización de viaje, los solicitantes y titulares de TPS deben presentar el Formulario I-131, Solicitud de Documento de Viaje, mientras se encuentran en los EE. UU. Si su solicitud de viaje es aprobada, se le emitirá un documento de viaje. 

¿Cómo mantengo el estatus de TPS Venezolano? 

Una vez que se le otorgue el TPS, debe volver a registrarse durante el período de re-registro designado para mantener su estatus. Esto significa que completará y presentará el Formulario I-821, Solicitud de Estatus de Protección Temporal durante el período de re-registro. 

Los titulares de TPS bajo la redesignación de Venezuela 2021 deben haberse vuelto a registrar durante el período de re-registro de 60 días que se realizó del 10 de enero de 2024 al 10 de marzo de 2024. 

Los titulares de TPS venezolanos también deben continuar demostrando residencia continua y presencia física continua en los Estados Unidos. 

¿Puedo recibir beneficios públicos si tengo TPS? 

No, los beneficiarios de TPS no son elegibles para beneficios públicos, pero pueden recibir beneficios públicos si mantienen el estatus de libertad condicional mientras tienen TPS. 

¿Puedo estudiar mientras tengo TPS? 

Sí, los beneficiarios de TPS pueden asistir a universidades y colegios mientras estén en los EE. UU. Sin embargo, si su estatus de TPS termina mientras está en la escuela, necesitará otro estatus (como una visa de estudiante) para continuar su programa. 

¿Es el TPS un estatus permanente? 

El TPS no proporciona un estatus permanente y no conduce a la residencia permanente legal o la ciudadanía. Sin embargo, es renovable hasta que el Departamento de Seguridad Nacional termine la designación de TPS para su país. 

¿Cómo puedo obtener un estatus permanente? 

Para obtener un estatus permanente, deberá calificar y solicitar un método de alivio, como asilo o una petición familiar. El TPS no le impide solicitar otros estatus migratorios.

¿Puedo perder el estatus de TPS? 

Sí, hay varias circunstancias bajo las cuales podría perder su Estatus de Protección Temporal (TPS). Si viaja fuera del país sin recibir autorización de viaje, podría perder su estatus de TPS. De manera similar, si no se vuelve a registrar durante el período de re-registro, también podría perder su estatus. Si el Departamento de Seguridad Nacional (DHS) decide terminar el TPS para su país, su estatus finalizará. 

Ya tengo autorización de trabajo. ¿Debería solicitar el TPS? 

Bajo el TPS, las personas pueden solicitar estatus migratorios separados que pueden usarse como un "estatus de respaldo". El TPS solo terminará si el DHS deja de extender el programa para su país, por lo que típicamente es renovable durante muchos años. Si tiene el TPS como "estatus de respaldo" y algo le sucede a su otro estatus que proporciona su autorización de trabajo, no será removible y permanecerá en estatus legal. 

¿Qué pasa si mi solicitud de TPS no se procesa antes de que expire mi estatus actual de TPS? 

Mientras su solicitud de TPS esté pendiente, no acumulará estatus ilegal. Una vez que se apruebe su TPS, estará autorizado para trabajar. 

Si se me concede el TPS, ¿cuándo debo renovar mi estatus de TPS? 

Al recibir su notificación de aprobación de TPS, habrá una fecha de vencimiento que indicará cuándo debe renovarlo. Recomendamos que presente su renovación al menos 6 meses antes de la fecha de vencimiento. 

¿Qué pasa si tengo otras preguntas? 

Esta guía de preguntas frecuentes tiene como objetivo proporcionar información general. Recomendamos hablar con un abogado de inmigración sobre sus opciones. 

¿Puede NSLAC ayudarme a solicitar el TPS venezolano? 

Sí. Hacer que la asistencia legal sea accesible para todas las comunidades es nuestra prioridad. NSLAC organiza clínicas de TPS regularmente y en una variedad de lugares accesibles, asegurando que los residentes del condado de Cook y del condado de Lake tengan acceso conveniente a estos servicios vitales. Si usted o alguien que conoce necesita asistencia legal de inmigración, por favor comuníquese con NSLAC al 847 737 4042 o envíe un correo electrónico a info@nslegalaid.org. NSLAC también ofrece servicios legales gratuitos de vivienda y violencia doméstica. Intérpretes están disponibles a pedido en todos los idiomas. Los servicios están disponibles independientemente de estatus migratorio. 

Sources:  

“Federal Register:: Request Access.” Unblock.federalregister.gov, 3 Oct. 2023, www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/10/03/2023-21865/extension-and-redesignation-of-venezuela-for-temporary-protected-status. 

“Secretary Mayorkas Announces Extension and Redesignation of Venezuela for Temporary Protected Status | Homeland Security.” Www.dhs.gov, 20 Sept. 2023, www.dhs.gov/news/2023/09/20/secretary-mayorkas-announces-extension-and-redesignation-venezuela-temporary. 

“Temporary Protected Status Designated Country: Venezuela | USCIS.” Www.uscis.gov, 9 Mar. 2021, www.uscis.gov/humanitarian/temporary-protected-status/temporary-protected-status-designated-country-venezuela. 

“Temporary Protected Status for Venezuela - 2021 Extension and 2023 Re-Designation Frequently Asked Questions | USCIS.” Www.uscis.gov, 2 May 2024, www.uscis.gov/humanitarian/temporary-protected-status/venezuela/temporary-protected-status-for-venezuela-2021-extension-and-2023-re-designation-frequently-asked. Accessed 10 May 2024. 

Free Immigration Legal Aid for Venezuelan TPS

What is Venezuelan TPS: Frequently Asked Questions

What is Venezuelan TPS: Frequently Asked Questions

In response to Venezuela's humanitarian, security, political, and environmental conditions that prevent its nationals from safely returning to their country, the Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas, announced on September 20, 2023, the redesignation and extension of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Venezuela for 18 months. This redesignation allows both existing beneficiaries and eligible new applicants to apply for or retain TPS. 

What is TPS? 

Temporary Protected Status, or TPS, is temporary immigration status granted by the Secretary of Homeland Security to eligible foreign nationals present in the U.S., who cannot safely return to their country due to ongoing armed conflict, an environmental disaster, epidemic, or other extraordinary and temporary conditions. TPS provides temporary protection from deportation and eligibility for work authorization in the U.S. during the designated period. It is important to note that TPS does not lead to permanent resident status or citizenship. 

What is TPS for Venezuela? 

On September 20, 2023, the Department of Homeland Security announced the redesignation and extension of Venezuela for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 months.  

  • For existing Venezuelan TPS holders, present in the U.S before July 31, 2023, this redesignation provides continued temporary protection from deportation, as well as employment authorization.  This extension gives existing beneficiaries TPS through September 10, 2025. 
  • For new Venezuelan TPS applicants, present in the U.S. as of July 31, 2023, this redesignation will provide approved TPS applicants protection from deportation and employment authorization through April 2, 2025. 

When do I apply for Venezuelan TPS? 

You can apply for Venezuelan TPS during the registration period determined by USCIS. 

  • For new first-time Venezuelan TPS applicants, the application period begins on October 3, 2023, and will remain in effect for 18 months, ending on April 2, 2025.  
  • TPS holders under the Venezuela 2021 designation must have re-registered during the 60-day re-registration period that ran from Jan. 10, 2024, through March 10, 2024. 

What do I need to file for Venezuelan TPS? 

To file for TPS, applicants need to submit identity/nationality evidence, date of entry evidence, and continuous residence evidence. 

Examples include: 

  • Identity/Nationality: copy of your birth certificate, copy of your passport, and/or any national identity document that has your photograph. 
  • Date of Entry: copy of your passport, I-94 Arrival/Departure Record; or copies of documents specified in the Continuous Residence section below. 
  • Continuous Residence: leases, utility bills, medical records, mailed correspondence, letters from church/organization to confirm that they have been present in the U.S., etc. Continuous residence requirement starts on July 31, 2023 

All documents must include the appropriate dates and the name of the applicant. 

How long does Venezuelan TPS take to receive after filing? 

Processing times vary greatly. Venezuelan TPS applicants can typically expect to wait between 6 and 18 months. 

For the most up-to-date processing times please review the USCIS website. 

What are the benefits of Venezuelan TPS 

  • Individuals granted TPS are not removable from the United States and cannot be detained based on their immigration status. 
  • TPS recipients can obtain employment authorization (EAD.) and legally work in the United States 
  • TPS recipients may apply for travel authorization and be granted travel authorization without jeopardizing their TPS status.  

Can I travel on Venezuelan TPS? 

You may be granted travel authorization if you have a pending TPS case, or you have been granted TPS. To request travel authorization, TPS applicants and holders must file Form I-131, Application for Travel Document, while in the U.S. If your request to travel is granted, you will be issued a travel document. 

How do I keep my Venezuelan TPS status?  

Once you are granted TPS, you must re-register during the designated re-registration period to maintain your status. This means you will complete and file the Form I-821, Application for Temporary Protected Status form during the re-registration period. 

TPS holders under the Venezuela 2021 redesignation must have re-registered during the 60-day re-registration period that ran from Jan. 10, 2024, through March 10, 2024.  

Venezuelan TPS holders must also continue to show both continuous residence and continuous physical presence in the United States. 

Can I receive public benefits if I have TPS? 

You are not eligible for public benefits as a TPS beneficiary, but you may receive public benefits if you maintain parole status while on TPS. 

Can I go to school while on TPS? 

Yes, TPS beneficiaries can attend colleges and universities while in the U.S. If, however, your TPS status ends while you’re in school, you will need another status (like a student visa) to continue your program. 

Is TPS permanent status?  

TPS does not provide permanent status and does not lead to lawful permanent residency or citizenship. However, it is renewable until the Department of Homeland Security terminates the TPS designation for your country. 

How can I get permanent status? 

To get permanent status, you will need to qualify and apply for a method of relief, such as asylum or a family petition. TPS does not prevent you from applying for other statuses and you may be able to apply for separate immigration statuses that can be used as a “backup status.”

Can I ever lose TPS status?  

Yes, there are several circumstances under which you could lose your Temporary Protected Status (TPS). If you travel abroad without receiving travel authorization, you could lose your TPS status. Similarly, if you fail to re-register during the re-registration window, you could also lose status. If the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) decides to terminate TPS for your country, your status will end. 

I already have work authorization. Should I apply for TPS? 

Under TPS, individuals are allowed to apply for separate immigration statuses that can be used as a “backup status.” TPS will only end if DHS stops extending the program to your country, so it is typically renewable for many years. If you have TPS as a “backup status” and something happens to your other status that provides your work authorization, you won’t be removable and will remain in lawful status. 

What happens if my TPS application is not processed before my current TPS status expires? 

While your TPS application is pending, you will not accrue unlawful status. Once your TPS is approved, you will be authorized to work. 

If I am granted TPS, when do I need to renew my TPS status?  

Once you receive your TPS approval notice, there will be an expiration date that indicates when you must renew. NSLAC recommends you file your renewal at least 6 months before the expiration date. 

What if I have other questions? 

This FAQ guide is meant to provide general information. We recommend speaking with a qualified immigration attorney about your options. 

Can NSLAC help me apply for Venezuelan TPS? 

Yes. Providing access to legal assistance to all communities is our priority. NSLAC hosts free TPS clinics regularly and in a variety of accessible locations, ensuring that residents of north suburban Cook County and Lake County have convenient access to these vital legal services. If you or someone you know needs access to immigration legal aid, please be in touch with NSLAC at 847 737 4042 or email info@nslegalaid.org. NSLAC also provides free domestic violence legal aid and housing legal aid. Interpreters are available upon request in all languages. Services are available regardless of immigration status.  

Sources:  

“Federal Register :: Request Access.” Unblock.federalregister.gov, 3 Oct. 2023, www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/10/03/2023-21865/extension-and-redesignation-of-venezuela-for-temporary-protected-status. 

“Secretary Mayorkas Announces Extension and Redesignation of Venezuela for Temporary Protected Status | Homeland Security.” Www.dhs.gov, 20 Sept. 2023, www.dhs.gov/news/2023/09/20/secretary-mayorkas-announces-extension-and-redesignation-venezuela-temporary. 

“Temporary Protected Status Designated Country: Venezuela | USCIS.” Www.uscis.gov, 9 Mar. 2021, www.uscis.gov/humanitarian/temporary-protected-status/temporary-protected-status-designated-country-venezuela. 

“Temporary Protected Status for Venezuela - 2021 Extension and 2023 Re-Designation Frequently Asked Questions | USCIS.” Www.uscis.gov, 2 May 2024, www.uscis.gov/humanitarian/temporary-protected-status/venezuela/temporary-protected-status-for-venezuela-2021-extension-and-2023-re-designation-frequently-asked. Accessed 10 May 2024. 

Guardians ad Litem and their purpose in Illinois.

What Is a Guardian ad Litem (GAL) in Illinois?

What Is a Guardian ad Litem (GAL) in Illinois? Understanding a GALs Impactful Role in Family Court.

In the intricate dynamics of family court, where decisions profoundly impact children's lives, a Guardian ad Litem (GAL) emerges as a central figure. At NSLAC, we work closely with GALs on our staff and others to ensure that children’s voices are heard, and their interests are protected during challenging family disputes. 

In Illinois, a Guardian ad Litem is appointed by the court to serve as an unbiased advocate, dedicated solely to safeguarding the best interests of children involved in a family dispute. Unlike an attorney, a GAL brings a unique perspective focused on the child's welfare. This includes considering the child’s relationships with parents and other relatives, living conditions, and any potential risks that they may face.  

Guardians ad Litem ensure that the voices of children are heard within the legal system. A GAL will provide the court with impartial recommendations regarding custody, visitation, and other matters on what they believe is best for the child based upon research and observation. 

What is the importance of Guardians ad Litem?  

Guardians ad Litem are often referred to as the eyes and ears of the courtroom, helping give judges a complete picture of the child’s situation. GALs play a crucial role in ensuring that the voices of children are heard, and a child’s best interests are protected. GALs provide a unique perspective by uniquely focusing on the child's situation and interests, separate from the interests of parents or other parties involved in the case. By conducting thorough investigations and making recommendations based on the child's needs and well-being, GALs help judges make informed decisions that promote the child's safety, stability, and overall welfare.  

What are some common responsibilities of a Guardian ad Litem? 

Common responsibilities of GALs include conducting interviews with the child, parents, caregivers, and other relevant parties; reviewing documents and records related to the case; observing interactions between the child and others involved; attending court hearings and providing testimony; and making recommendations to the court regarding custody, visitation, and any necessary services or support for the child. 

What distinguishes Guardians ad Litem from other legal representatives, such as attorneys or social workers? 

Unlike attorneys and social workers who typically represent specific parties or provide direct services, Guardians ad Litem independently advocate for a child's best interests. They're appointed by the court as neutral observers, unlike traditional legal representatives. Additionally, GALs can be called as witnesses or cross-examined regarding the Guardian ad Litem report or recommendations, setting them apart from child representatives. 

When and how are Guardian ad Litem appointed? 

Illinois statutes outline that a Guardian at Litem may be appointed in any proceedings involving the support, custody, visitation, allocation of parental responsibilities, education, parentage, property interest, or general welfare of a minor or dependent child. The court can appoint a GAL when parents cannot agree on the allocation of parental rights and responsibilities. The motion to appoint a GAL may be made by either the court or as a request by one or both parents.  

GALs are selected from a court’s list of trained and approved attorneys. When appointing a GAL, the court may consider factors like availability and specialization, sometimes assigning specific cases to individuals with special experience serving in similar cases. A complete list of GALs approved to serve in Lake County, Illinois can be found HERE. 

It is important to note that an attorney cannot serve as both legal counsel for a party and as a Guardian ad Litem (GAL) in the same case. This separation ensures that GALs can maintain impartiality and focus solely on the child's welfare without conflicts of interest. This separation helps uphold the integrity of the GAL role and safeguards the interest of a child within legal proceedings. 

What is NSLAC’s role as GALs?  

NSLAC’s Domestic Violence Law Practice attorneys are trained and approved Guardians ad Litem by the Lake County’s Judicial Circuit. Our attorneys are appointed to serve as pro bono GALs in cases involving domestic violence and financial need. As appointed GALs, NSLAC attorneys leverage their training and knowledge to carefully review each case to ensure the voices of those they represent are heard and considered in court.  

Have more questions?  

Have more questions regarding Guardians ad Litem or domestic violence? Please call NSLAC at 847-737-4042 or email info@nslegalaid.org. NSLAC provides free legal aid services in the areas of housing, domestic violence, and immigration to low-income residents living in north suburban Cook County or Lake County. Interpreters are available upon request in all languages. Services are available regardless of immigration status.    

Sources: 

“Child Atty/Child Rep/Guardian Ad Litem.” Www.cookcountycourt.org, www.cookcountycourt.org/ABOUT-THE-COURT/County-Department/Domestic-Relations-Division/Child-Rep-Guardian-Ad-Litem-GAL#2971441-what-is-a-guardian-ad-litem. Accessed 1 Apr. 2024. 

“Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) Basics.” Illinoislegalaid.org, 2024, www.illinoislegalaid.org/legal-information/guardian-ad-litem-gal-basics#:~:text=A%20Guardian%20ad%20Litem%20(GAL. Accessed 1 Apr. 2024. 

“Illinois General Assembly - Illinois Compiled Statutes.” Www.ilga.gov, www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=075000050K506. Accessed 1 Apr. 2024. 

Free Immigration Legal Aid in Cook County and Lake County

What is Immigration Parole and Do I Qualify for It?

What is Immigration Parole and Do I Qualify for It? Free Legal Consultation with Experienced Immigration Attorneys. 

Immigration Parole grants temporary authorization allowing an individual to enter or remain in the United States for humanitarian or significant public benefit reasons. It grants entry into the United States but is not the same as legal admission for potential future immigration relief.  The United States offers various forms of immigration-related parole, including Advanced Parole, Humanitarian Parole, and Re-Parole. Parole allows individuals, who may otherwise be inadmissible or ineligible for admission into the United States, permission to enter or remain in the country. North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic (NSLAC) is dedicated to providing free immigration legal aid to community members seeking parole in north suburban Cook County, IL, and Lake County, IL.  

What is Advance Parole? 

Advance Parole is a travel document that can be requested by certain non-citizen individuals already living in the United States, who would like to request travel authorization to temporarily depart the country. Advance Parole allows individuals to travel and lawfully return to the United States. Request for Advance Parole can be made by filing Form I-131 Application for Travel Document and can be submitted for a future date. Although this application can have significant processing times, an expedited request can be made if an applicant wishes to visit a terminally ill relative or seek medical treatment. 

It is important for applicants to be aware of the risk of leaving the United States and attempting to return as Advance Parole does not guarantee admission to the United States. NSLAC advises all applicants to consult an experienced immigration attorney before applying for travel authorization, to review their specific legal situation. Learn more about Travel Documents HERE. 

What is Humanitarian Parole? 

Humanitarian Parole is a discretionary grant made by the US government, allowing individuals temporary permission to enter the United States for urgent humanitarian reasons or significant public benefit. This could be due to personal circumstances such as needing urgent medical treatment or visiting a critically ill relative. In addition to individual-specific parole requests, The U.S. offers several country specific programs available for nationals of Afghanistan, Cuba, Haiti, Nicaragua, Venezuela, and Ukraine, in response to prevailing conditions in those countries.  

What is the process to apply for Humanitarian Parole? 

A petitioner living in the United States can apply for a travel authorization document on behalf of a beneficiary individual who is outside the United States. A petitioner must submit a declaration of financial support showing that the petitioner can financially support the beneficiary when they come to the United States. If the beneficiary is approved and comes to the United States with travel authorization, they are then considered a Parolee for the duration of their allowed time. As a Parolee, the individual would have temporary legal status and will not accrue unlawful presence in the United States during their authorized Parole period. Depending on the Parole program admitted under, a Parolee may also be eligible for work authorization and certain public benefits during their parole period. Learn more about Humanitarian Parole HERE 

What is Re-Parole? 

Re-Parole is available for individuals from certain countries who are already in the United States under a Humanitarian Parole program and wish to extend their expiring parole period. In late February 2024, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced a Re-Parole program for Ukrainian nationals who entered the United States as a Parolee, following the war in Ukraine in February 2022. Under the Ukrainian Re-Parole program, current Parolees can apply to extend their Parole for another two years.  

What are the benefits of applying for Re-Parole? 

 Extending your parole period through Re-Parole can offer several benefits, including 

  • Avoid accruing unlawful presence in the United States during the extended parole period  
  • The opportunity to apply for a work authorization extension for the duration of the new parole period. 
  • Continue to be eligible for certain public benefits during the new parole period.  

For the latest updates of Re-Parole, click HERE

Can NSLAC help me review my Immigration case and determine if I am eligible for Parole? 

Yes, North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic has a diverse and experienced team of immigration attorneys available for free legal aid consultation. They will carefully review your immigration case and help determine if you qualify to file for parole or other potential forms of immigration relief. If you or someone you know needs immigration assistance, please be in touch with NSLAC at 847-737-4042 or email info@nslegalaid.org to review eligibility for our services and to schedule a consultation. NSLAC also offers free legal aid in the areas of domestic violence and housing. 

Parole Mission Moments:  

At North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic (NSLAC), we are proud to share the inspirational stories of those who have successfully obtained Parole, showcasing resilience, determination, and the transformative power of NSLAC’s free legal aid.  

A Granddaughter’s Journey of Love Beyond Borders 

Digital Abuse Legal Help

Protecting Families Against Co-Parental Digital Abuse Through Technology Awareness

Protecting Families Against Co-Parental Digital Abuse Through Technology Awareness

In today's digital age, emerging technologies have become an integral part of everyday life for both children and parents. Devices like children's watches and home security apps offer enticing features such as discreet listening, video surveillance, and location tracking, promising enhanced security, connectivity, and convenience. 

However, beneath the surface of these seemingly beneficial advancements lies a troubling vulnerability: the potential exploitation of these technologies by abusive co-parents. In the hands of dangerous individuals, these seemingly convenient technologies can be misused to manipulate, monitor, and control their victims. 

While these technologies may appear advantageous, it is essential for parents to recognize the risks and take the necessary precautions to safeguard themselves and their children. Below, we delve into the safety measures that can be implemented to ensure the security and well-being of families in the digital age. Thank you to EndTab for providing us with these important updates to educate the public and ensure that victims and communities are aware of the digital measures they can take to protect themselves.  

Children’s Smart Watches:  

Much like smartphones, smartwatches allow parents to locate, monitor, and contact their children from anywhere. While accessible, smartwatches are also equipped with features like geofencing (getting alerts when the device leaves a location), location tracking, and location history. When used for good, they features can provide a sense of safety for parents, however, in the wrong hands, these features can be exploited by an abusive co-parent. Learn about how to mitigate these risks below:  

Learn the Device’s Features:  

Understanding the capabilities of our children’s technologies, particularly its tracking and monitoring features, helps empower parents to make informed decisions when their children are in their care. If you are worried about the capabilities of your child’s technology, we encourage you to research the device and model and take note of its features.  

Disable the Device: 

Parents may consider disabling the device or keeping it out of sight when their child is in their care. While this may help reduce or eliminate monitoring risk, it is essential to acknowledge the potential consequences of cutting off an abusive parent’s access to their victim and children.  

Co-parenting Technology Agreement:  

If possible and safe to do, addressing technology devices in co-parenting agreements can establish a mutual understanding and set boundaries, ensuring both parties agree that any devices for their child should be agreed upon and that both parties consent to the use of integrated tracking technologies.  

Home Security Apps 

Home security apps, often installed on children’s devices, provide real-time surveillance and access to historical recordings. While these apps can enhance safety, they can also be weaponized by an abusive co-parent to monitor another parent’s home without consent. Below are a few ways to mitigate the risk and help parents stay safe from unwanted access monitoring. 

Situationally Delete the App:  

Before visits with an abusive co-parent, victims may consider removing home security apps from their child’s device. This can help prevent unauthorized access to the other parent’s home and privacy when a child is not in their care.  

Confidential Login Credentials: 

Parents can prevent an abusive co-parent from having access to their home security apps by ensuring that their child does not know the login credentials for their home security apps. This may also help reduce the risk that an abusive co-parent accesses this information by coercing the information from children.  

Check Authorized Devices and Shared Users:  

Depending on the app, home security device owners can review the list of authorized users to their account or home security account. Victims can also check their account settings for any shared users who might be added without their consent or knowledge.  

Knowledge is Key 

In navigating the ever-evolving landscape of technology, it's natural to feel overwhelmed, especially if we don't consider ourselves tech experts. Knowledge is key and the best thing we can do is educate the public about these risks. By raising awareness and sharing this information, we can empower individuals to make informed decisions and protect themselves and their children from potential harm. 

The information provided above offers a few actionable steps to keep victims and their children safe from both unwanted and nonconsensual monitoring. As we continue to adapt to new devices and features, ongoing education and vigilance remain paramount in safeguarding digital against abuse and privacy violations. Together, we can work towards a safer digital future for all.  

Get In Touch

If you or someone you know is struggling with digital abuse and is in need of domestic violence legal aid, please be in touch with North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic at 847-737-4042 or email info@NSLegalAid.org. NSLAC also offers free legal aid in the areas of immigration and housing. Services are available regardless of immigration status. 

Seeking Legal Aid from NSLAC

Navigating Legal Aid: Your Guide to Seeking Legal Assistance from NSLAC

Navigating Legal Aid: Your Guide to Seeking Legal Aid Assistance from NSLAC

Making the first call to receive legal help can be intimidating. This marks a crucial first step in safeguarding your rights and addressing your concerns with the care they deserve. At NSLAC we understand the significance of every case, and our dedicated team is committed to providing you with the support and guidance you need. The information below will help you understand what to expect as you seek legal aid and know that our team is here to help you every step of the way. 

What legal aid services does NSLAC provide? 

NSLAC is a non-profit providing free legal aid services in the areas of domestic violence, housing, and immigration 

Are NSLAC’s services free?  

Yes, NSLAC’s services are free of charge if you meet our eligibility requirements.  

What are NSLAC’s eligibility requirements?  

To qualify for NSLAC’s free legal aid services, you must be a resident living in north suburban Cook County or Lake County and have a household income less than 250% of the federal poverty level.  There are no income requirements for victims of domestic violence. NSLAC does not assist in criminal cases.  

What if I do not meet NSLAC’s eligibility requirements?  

If you do not meet NSLAC’s financial or service area requirements, we will do our best to refer you to other legal aid organizations or outside resources. 

Who will I speak to when I initially call NSLAC?  

When you first call NSLAC’s office, you will be assisted by an NSLAC intake specialist. Intake specialists are proficient in screening clients for eligibility, collecting client information, providing translation and interpretation support, and offering referrals. Please keep in mind that intake specialists are not attorneys, and no legal advice will be given during your intake call. If an intake specialist is unavailable at the time of your call, another team member will assist you, but an eligibility screening will not be conducted during this time. In such cases, please expect a callback from an intake specialist within 24-48 hours. 

Can NSLAC provide interpretation services if I do not speak English?  

Yes, NSLAC has a diverse team proficient in Spanish, Ukrainian, Russian, Pashto, Dari, and Urdu. If needed, we also offer over-the-phone interpretation services for other languages. 

What can I expect from my initial call?  

During your initial call, an intake specialist will prescreen you to determine if you are eligible for NSLAC’s legal aid services.  

What is a prescreen?  

A prescreen is an initial eligibility assessment, that involves gathering information about a client’s legal issue and financial situation to determine if they are eligible for NSLAC’s free legal services.  

How long will my prescreen take? 

A prescreen can typically last between 10-45 minutes, depending on your legal need.  

Does the intake process vary depending on the practice area? 

Yes, depending on your legal need, the intake process will vary. Generally, if you are calling for NSLAC’s housing legal aid, you may be asked additional questions regarding your household income. 

What information will be asked for during my initial call? 

During your initial call to NSLAC, you may be asked for some or all the following details: 

  • First name and Last name 
  • Location and Zip Code 
  • Email 
  • Date of Birth 
  • Phone Number 
  • Household Income 
  • Preferred Language 
  • Referral Source (How did you hear from us) 
  • Summary of your legal issues 
  • Courthouse where your case is located 

Additionally, NSLAC will ask questions regarding your demographics. This information enables us to better serve our clients. All information is confidential. 

Should I have any documents or information on hand during the prescreening process?  

No specific documents or information are required during the prescreening process. However, having the following information, when applicable, will be helpful as we assist you.  

  • Housing Legal Aid Services

    • A rough estimate of household income, the name of the landlord or management company, case number, and/or the courthouse where your case is located.  
  • Immigration Legal Aid: 

    • Your court date, date of arrival in the U.S., case number, and/ or the courthouse where your case is located 
  • Domestic Violence Legal Aid

    • The courthouse where your case is located (if applicable) 

After my prescreen, when can I expect to hear back from NSLAC? 

If after a prescreen, an intake specialist believes you are eligible for NSLAC’s services, you will be given a consultation date to speak with an attorney. Depending on the practice area, your case may be reviewed, and you will receive a call back to confirm your consultation.   

What if NSLAC cannot help me?  

If NSLAC finds it cannot provide you with legal aid services, we will do our best to refer you to other legal aid organizations or outside resources. 

 If I qualify for legal assistance, what is the next step?  

After you have been given a consultation, an NSLAC attorney will call you at your scheduled time. Consultations typically last 45 minutes to an hour. From there, an attorney will evaluate your case and determine if NSLAC can take your case.  

 Will I always work with the same attorney? 

Yes, if your case is approved, you will typically work with one attorney. However, practice assistants and other attorneys might also contribute to your case as needed.  

What if my case involves more than one practice area?  

If your case involves more than one practice area, an intake specialist will conduct separate intakes and arrange separate consultations for each specific practice area.  

Have more questions? 

If you have more questions regarding NSLAC’s services, please call NSLAC at 847-737-4042 or email info@nslegalaid.org. Interpreters are available upon request in all languages. Services are available regardless of immigration status.  

Human Trafficking

Unveiling the Shadows: A Closer Look at Human Trafficking 

Unveiling the Shadows: A Closer Look at Human Trafficking 

Human trafficking is a pervasive global crisis, that ensnares countless individuals, transcending borders and leaving lives shattered in its wake. Recognizing the signs and raising awareness are critical in combating this modern-day slavery. The information below sheds light on the reality of human trafficking and highlights key indicators to help identify abuse and bring an end to the cycle of exploitation and suffering. NSLAC stands as a beacon of hope for victims and survivors, providing free legal assistance and support to help them break free from the abuse.  

What is human trafficking?  

Under U.S. law, human trafficking refers to the exploitation of individuals through the use of force, deception, or coercion to compel them into labor or commercial sex against their will. It is a form of modern-day slavery that transcends borders and impacts millions of women, men and children globally and within the United States. Human trafficking can manifest in various ways, such as forced labor and sex trafficking.  

  • Forced labor involves the exploitation of individuals through coercion, fraud, or force for labor, services, or financial profit.  
  • Sex trafficking occurs when individuals are coerced, deceived, or forced into engaging in commercial sexual activities.  

While it may seem that human trafficking occurs behind closed doors, victims are often hidden in plain sight.  Traffickers target the most vulnerable, often undocumented immigrants, people of color, those in unstable living situations, or previous victims of abuse. Anyone in any community can be a victim of human trafficking and traffickers often blend into the community. 

Recognizing the Signs 

Human trafficking is a diverse and complex crime, often hidden in plain sight. Learning to recognize the signs is the first step in identifying victims and helping save a life.  

Someone may be experiencing human trafficking or exploitation if they: 

  • Do not have access to important documents such as passports, birth certificates, or work authorization cards. 
  • Have no control over their wages or feel compelled to give their wages directly to a third party. 
  • Experience constant monitoring or restrictions on their movements and phone calls. 
  • Were recruited for work under false promises. 
  • Live in dangerous, overcrowded, and inhumane conditions. 
  • Appear disconnected from their family, friends, or community. 
  • Often exhibit signs of fear, paranoia, tension, disorientation, or confusion. 
  • Live and work in isolated conditions. 
  • Show signs of being denied food, water, sleep, or medical care. 
  • Exhibit physical injuries in various stages of healing. 
  • Cannot freely leave where they live or work. 
  • Are coached in what to say when questioned or are often accompanied by someone to whom they defer.

 If you believe you may have information about a trafficking situation, report a tip HERE 

The Impact of Human Trafficking on Victims and Survivors 

The consequences of human trafficking can be deep and prolonged, affecting victims emotionally, physically, and psychologically, often all at once. Survivors often experience depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, eating disorders, and substance abuse. It is also not uncommon for survivors to develop feelings of guilt, shame, or denial, making them reluctant to seek help. 

Recognizing and addressing the trauma of human trafficking is a critical step in a survivor’s path to recovery and well-being. While navigating the trauma of human trafficking can take time, with professional and compassionate trauma-informed support, survivors can begin the journey toward healing and rebuilding their lives beyond the shadows of exploitation and abuse. 

Breaking the Silence and Seeking Help 

Human trafficking has no place in our community, and NSLAC is dedicated to fighting against it. If you or someone you know is showing signs of being a victim of human trafficking, please call 911 or contact the North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic (NSLAC). NSLAC offers confidential and free legal help to victims, collaborating closely with law enforcement and other organizations to ensure victims get the professional support and guidance they need. 

If you are in need of free legal services, please contact NSLAC at 847-737-4042 or email info@nslegalaid.org. If this is an emergency, please call 911 immediately.  

How You Can Help 

Human trafficking can occur in any community, and raising public awareness is crucial in our fight against this crime. By learning to recognize the key indicators, raising awareness, and reporting suspected cases of human trafficking, individuals, educators, businesses, and first responders all contribute to dismantling the networks of exploitation.  

Here are some effective ways to contribute to raising awareness: 

  • Print or digitally share and distribute NSLAC's human trafficking flyer 
  • Share this blog on social media platforms and other digital channels. 
  • Learn more about human trafficking and recognizing the signs HERE 
  • If you suspect human trafficking activity, report a tip HERE 

 Through education and awareness, we can work together to shine a light on human trafficking and protect the most vulnerable individuals in our communities. 

Know the Signs, Be the Change 

We all have the potential to identify a human trafficking case and make a life-saving difference. By learning to recognize the signs, raising awareness, and reporting human trafficking, together we play a critical role in combating this global crisis. No one should live in fear for their life. 

We encourage you to be vigilant and share the information found in this blog to help raise awareness with those around you. Through our collective commitment, we can build a future where every individual can live free from fear and exploitation.  

Additional Resources 

Interested in learning more? The resources below provide more information on human trafficking, reporting a tip, identifying abuse, and educational resources.  

Human Trafficking Hotlines: 

National Human Trafficking Hotline: To report a potential human trafficking situation, call the hotline at 1-888-373-7888, or submit a tip online here. Learn more about recognizing the signs of human trafficking here 

Domestic Violence: National Domestic Violence Hotline, 24 hour Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) 

Dating Violence: National Dating Abuse Helpline, 24 hour Hotline: 1-866-331-9474 

Educational Resources:  

Polaris: Learn more about types of human trafficking HERE 

Blue Campaign: Learn more about human trafficking and find downloadable teaching tools HERE 

 

References: 

Homeland Security. (n.d.). How You Can Help | Www.dhs.gov. https://www.dhs.gov/blue-campaign/play-role 

Human Trafficking Capacity Building Center. (n.d.). THE VICTIM’S SAFETY AND WELL-BEING TAKE PRIORITY IN ALL MATTERS. https://htcbc.ovc.ojp.gov/sites/g/files/xyckuh311/files/media/document/Understanding_Trauma_508c.pdf 

U.S. Department of Homeland Security (2021, January 10) Identify and Assist a Trafficking Victim - United States Department of Statehttps://www.state.gov/identify-and-assist-a-trafficking-victim/#indicators 

Polaris. (2019, October 16). How Human Trafficking Happens | Polaris. Polarisproject.org; Polaris. https://polarisproject.org/understanding-human-trafficking/ 

Polaris. (2019, October 16) The Typology of Modern Slavery | Polaris. Polarisproject.org. https://polarisproject.org/the-typology-of-modern-slavery/ 

 U.S. Department of State. (2023). About Human Trafficking. United States Department of State. https://www.state.gov/humantrafficking-about-human-trafficking/#victims 

U.S. Department of Homeland Security. (2018, October 17). Indicators of Human Trafficking. Department of Homeland Security. https://www.dhs.gov/blue-campaign/indicators-human-trafficking 

U.S Department of State. (n.d.). Public Awareness & Training. United States Department of State. https://www.state.gov/humantrafficking-public-awareness-training/ 

teen dating violence

Breaking the Silence: Understanding and Addressing Teen Dating Violence 

Breaking the Silence: Understanding and Addressing Teen Dating Violence 

Teen dating violence is a prevalent, widespread issue that occurs more frequently than many realize. Studies show that one in three teens in the U.S. will experience physical, sexual, or emotional abuse from someone they are in a relationship with before they become adults. Any teen can be a victim of dating violence, and some may not even realize that what they are experiencing is abuse. For this reason, it is important to understand the signs of an unhealthy, abusive relationship and raise awareness. Through education, we can empower teens to stay safe from abusive relationships. North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic stands as a steadfast ally for both teens and adults. Together we can end the cycle of violence.  

What is Teen Dating Violence?

Teen dating violence is a type of intimate partner violence between two adolescents in a close relationship. The abuse can manifest in many various forms, including physical, sexual, emotional/verbal abuse, stalking, and virtual abuse. At its core, Intimate partner violence occurs when a partner is seeking power and control over the other.  

Who is at Risk?  

Teen dating violence can affect anyone, across all genders and socioeconomic groups, however, women, women of color, and members of the LGBTQ+ community are disproportionately affected. 

The Signs of Teen Dating Violence for Teens:

A healthy relationship should make us feel good and bring out the best in us and our partners. While the signs of a healthy relationship are often clear, spotting the warning signs of an unhealthy one may not be as straightforward. If you or someone you know identifies with any of these warning signs, they could be experiencing dating violence: 

  • Your partner embarrasses you in front of others. 
  • They control who you can be friends with, where you go, or what you do. 
  • They move really fast at the beginning of the relationship 
  • They’re isolating you from family or friends 
  • They are excessively jealous or are accusing you of being unfaithful without merit 
  • They blame their behavior on you 
  • They are obsessively texting or calling you 
  • They threaten to hurt you or themselves because of something you did 
  • They’re having fits of rage when you’re alone but are nice with other people 
  • If you feel like they’re tracking you – they show up where you are even if you didn’t tell them where you are 

If you have identified yourself with any of these warning signs, look for someone you trust and talk to them. This can be your parents, your guardian, your friends, your school counselor, nurse, teacher, social worker, coach, whoever you trust – talk to them. Together, you can create a safety plan to help you leave an abusive relationship or help you respond to different scenarios. Learn more about safety plans below.  

If you have questions or concerns about an abusive relationship, please reach out to NSLAC. Support is always available.  

The Signs of Teen Dating Violence for Parents and Adults:

The warning signs of an unhealthy relationship may be very subtle, and it may be easy for teens to make a very convincing argument that they are okay. Below are some signs to look out for if you believe your teen is experiencing dating violence:  

  • Spending a lot less time with friends that they usually hang out with  
  • Declining grades, especially if a student used to have really good ones 
  • Covering up injuries or an explanation that doesn’t match the injury 
  • Not engaging in activities that they used to love 
  • Being anxious or nervous around their partner, or being concerned they’ll upset their partner 
  • Apologizing for their partner’s behavior or making excuses for it 
  • Extreme mood swings 
  • Unexplained medical issues like stomach issues, sleep problems, anxiety, chest pains, etc. 

How to Help a Teen Experiencing Teen Dating Violence?  

Adults, if you suspect your teen is in an abusive relationship, prepare before approaching them. Communication is key. We encourage you to do research on healthy and unhealthy relationships. When you are prepared to talk, choose an appropriate time and place, and discuss what you've observed with your teen. Encourage your teen to share their perspective and listen without judgment. 

It is not easy for teens to open up about something like this, so it is important to be understanding and assure them that they have done nothing wrong.  

And finally, believe what you hear. Avoid questioning or doubting. Ask your teen what they want to do next and be prepared to make a safety plan that fits their situation. If you need guidance, call us at North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic. 

What is a Safety Plan? 

A safety plan is a series of personalized and practical steps someone can take to improve their safety while experiencing abuse, preparing to leave their abusive situation or after they leave.   

Safety plans are tailored to the specific needs of the person and help them prepare and respond to scenarios, especially high-stress ones. Create a personal safety plan HERE. 

Seeking Support and Legal Guidance:

If you have identified yourself with any of the warning signs above, look for someone you trust and talk to them. If this is happening to a friend of yours, talk to someone you trust. If this is an emergency, please call 911 immediately.  

If you need legal assistance, North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic (NSLAC) provides free legal services to victims of abuse and violence. We can provide you with legal help to feel safe and heard.  

NSLAC provides legal support and assistance with orders of protection (for people with a pre-existing relationship), civil no-contact orders (typically used in cases of sexual assault), or stalking no-contact orders (where there might not be a romantic or family relationship but someone is still fearing for their safety and emotional well-being).  

If you or someone you know needs legal help or support, please contact NSLAC at 847-737-4042 or email info@nslegalaid.org 

Tips for Adults to Help Promote Healthy Relationship:  

Be a role model: Let the teens in your life see you treating your loved ones with the building blocks of a healthy relationship—compassion. respect and kindness.  

Talk and Listen: It is never too early to talk about respect. Communication is key. Engage in conversation with your teen about boundaries and consent and offer guidance on how to set their own boundaries.  

Talk About Dating: Ask your teen how they would like to be treated in a relationship and provide examples of what is and is not acceptable in a relationship. 

Encourage Open Communication: Let teens know that you are someone they can rely on without judgment. Engage them in positive adult-teen communication that makes them feel seen and heard. 

Conversations like this can be intimidating, but much like we want teenagers to receive respect from others, we also show respect for them through open and honest communication. 

Together We Break the Cycle:  

It is important that we continue the conversation of dating violence and healthy relationships. Please share this blog with your friends, and family, and on social media. Through collective awareness, we can continue to shed light on this prevalent issue that affects teens everywhere. Together, we can break the silence and end the cycle of abuse.

 Additional Resources:  

Love is Respect: Find resources on safety planning, how to talk to someone you think might be being abused, you can get individual support from experts on what to do. Hotlines are open 24/7. 

National Domestic Violence Hotline: Find information on the different kinds of abuse as well as identifying warning signs. Hotlines are open 24/7. 

North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic: Find additional resources, hotlines, and safety plans. 

 

 Sources:  

Create a safety plan. (n.d.). Love Is Respect. https://www.loveisrespect.org/personal-safety/create-a-safety-plan/ 

Fast Facts: Preventing Teen Dating Violence |Violence Prevention|Injury Center|CDC. (2023, July 23). Www.cdc.gov. https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/intimatepartnerviolence/teendatingviolence/fastfact.html#:~:text=Some%20teens%20are%20at%20greater 

How to help your child. (n.d.). Love Is Respect. Retrieved February 27, 2024, from https://www.loveisrespect.org/resources/how-to-help-child/ 

Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. (2024, February). Love Is Respect. https://www.loveisrespect.org/get-involved/tdvam/ 

TIPS FOR TALKING TO TEENS ABOUT HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS. (2021). https://girlsincpnw.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/Tips-for-Talking-to-Teens-About-Healthy-Relationships.pdf 

Warning signs of abuse. (n.d.). Love Is Respect. https://www.loveisrespect.org/dating-basics-for-healthy-relationships/warning-signs-of-abuse/ 

What is a Safety Plan? (n.d.). The Hotline. https://www.thehotline.org/what-is-a-safety-plan/ 

Free Legal Aid for Asylum Seekers in north suburban Cook County and Lake County

A Guide to U.S. Asylum

A Guide to U.S. Asylum | Free Asylum Legal Aid in North Suburban Cook County and Lake County

Every year, individuals from various parts of the world come to the United States in search of safety and protection. The United States provides a crucial form of immigration protection known as Asylum to qualifying individuals who cannot safely return to their home countries due to fear of persecution. For many, obtaining approved Asylum status means safety and protection, a route to work authorization, family reunification, and a possible pathway to achieving Permanent Residence Status. North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic (NSLAC) provides free legal aid to Asylum seekers in north suburban Cook County, IL, and Lake County, IL.  

 What is Asylum? 

Asylum is a form of legal immigration status granted to individuals who come to the United States seeking protection due to past persecution or fear of future persecution if they were to return to their Country of Nationality or the Country where they last resided.  

 What are the requirements to qualify for Asylum? 

  • You left your home country due to persecution or fear of future persecution based on one or more of the following – race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion. 
  • You are already in the United States or are seeking admission at the border. 
  • You file the Asylum application within one year of entering the United States. 

What is the process for filing for Asylum? 

There are two types of Asylum filings designed for individuals already in the United States who have a valid basis of experienced persecution in the past or fear of future persecution if they were to return to their home country, provided they have been in the United States for less than one year.

  • Affirmative Asylum is a type of Asylum petition that is proactively filed with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services while residing in the United States and before the government initiates any removal or deportation proceedings against you. 
  • Defensive Asylum is a type of Asylum filed when the Department of Homeland Security has initiated Removal Proceedings against you, and you file for Asylum in response to the Removal.  

What are the benefits of applying for Asylum? 

 While your Asylum application is being reviewed by the Government 

  • You may qualify for Work Authorization and a Social Security Number. 
  • You can remain in the United States and not accrue Unlawful Presence, an important factor for potential future immigration claims that you might submit. 
  • You can include your spouse and children present in the USA on your Asylum application. 

What are the benefits of having an approved Asylum case? 

 Once you have an approved Asylum status you can: 

  • Petition to bring your spouse and children to the United States 
  • Apply for Permanent Resident Status (Green card)

Can NSLAC help me review my Immigration situation and determine if I might qualify for Asylum and Asylum Legal Aid? 

Yes, North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic has a team of skilled immigration attorneys and representatives available for free legal aid consultations. They will carefully review your immigration case and determine if you qualify to file for asylum or other possible forms of immigration relief. If you or someone you know needs asylum assistance, please be in touch with NSLAC at 847-737-4042 or email info@nslegalaid.org to review eligibility for our services and to schedule a consultation. NSLAC also offers free legal aid in the areas of domestic violence and housing. 

For the latest updates on Asylum, please visit www.uscis.gov/humanitarian/refugees-and-asylum/asylum 

Asylum Mission Moments: 

At North Suburban Legal Aid Clinic (NSLAC), we are proud to share the inspirational stories of those who have successfully obtained asylum, showcasing resilience, determination, and the transformative power of NSLAC free legal aid.  

Defying Oppression and Fighting for Freedom 

From Service to Safety, a Journey of Hope 

A Journey from Fear to Freedom