Applying for asylum to the United States is an extensive process that requires you to provide ample evidence that you are fleeing persecution in your country of origin. Your affidavit, also known as your Declaration, can easily be the make-or-break component of your application. If you use the opportunity that the Declaration gives you to tell your story well, it can set your case for success when you apply for asylum! Read on to find out why your Declaration is the most important part of your application!
What is the Declaration?
The Declaration is a written testimony that you should submit with your asylum form. In the Declaration, you should explain why you fear persecution and the resulting danger you will face if you return to your home country. The Declaration should tell a clear, coherent story to the asylum officer or court that is supported by all of the evidence included with your application. Your Declaration should include the following:
- Background information,
- Any past persecution you have faced,
- Why your fear of future persecution is well-founded,
- Your lack of government protection, and
- Any other relevant information.
Why the Declaration is the Most Important!
The Declaration is the most important document in your application because it allows you to tie all the evidence together into one coherent story about why you qualify for asylum. It is submitted as a sworn testimony in your own words, meaning it carries the weight of evidence. Additionally, it allows you to personalize your story and convey it in a way that expresses the importance of being granted asylum. The best way for the immigration judge or asylum officer to get a clear picture of why you qualify for asylum is to hear it from you directly, in one consistent narrative. In many cases, the Declaration will carry the greatest weight in the decision about whether or not your application gets approved, so spend the time to craft a compelling testimony.
Why We Recommend Hiring an Immigration Asylum Attorney
The asylum process can be smoother when you have an asylum attorney, who will help you navigate the process and put together all the evidence for your case. Most important your asylum attorney will help you draft your asylum declaration. Here are 5 tips to make sure you have a strong Declaration:
5 Tips for Your Declaration
- Include different sections, such as background information, events leading to your persecution, details of your persecution, your relocation, etc.;
- Be as detailed and concise as possible;
- Make sure that everything you say matches any evidence you present. For example, make sure that the dates of events match any evidence you attach of police reports or medical reports;
- Make sure that you do not meet any of the grounds of inadmissibility; and
- If there is any part of your past that could hinder your ability to demonstrate Good Moral Character such as a misdemeanor conviction, make sure that you are able to explain why it shouldn’t disqualify you.
It’s important to take this chance to tell your story seriously not only because it can tie together your evidence, but because you can share important information that may not come up in your asylum interview or hearing. Your asylum attorney can help to make it personal and easy to understand, while still meeting all the legal requirements. Contact us if you would like an assessment and help from an experienced asylum attorney in developing your asylum Declaration.