Can I Work under Asylum/Refugee Status?

If you are wondering if you can work under asylum/refugee status in the U.S., we have the answer. We’re sharing everything you need to know.
Dooley Noted, Business Lawyer, Estate planning, Restaurant Lawyer, Insurance Dispute attorney, Alternative Dispute Resolutions

Staff Writer

Staff Writer, @DooleyNotedLaw

Recommended for you

My Spouse Isn’t a Citizen: Getting Them To the U.S.

My Spouse Isn’t a Citizen: Getting Them To the U.S.

It is not uncommon for U.S. citizens to marry people outside the states. If your spouse is not a citizen, you may wonder how to bring them to the United States.  While employment visas provide a temporary option for your foreign spouse to enter the states, the most...

The answer is complex because an asylum seeker or refugee must consider many things. However, this blog post will discuss everything you need to know about how to work under asylum/refugee status in the United States. We will also provide information on finding an immigration lawyer in Texas who can help you with your case.

Obtaining Asylum/Refugee Status

According to United States law, refugees are individuals who are persecuted or fear persecution due to race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group. If you seek refugee status, read our article for more information.

Seeking asylum is for those already in the United States. They ask for asylum in the United States due to fear or if their home country is persecuting them. This persecution or fear often stems from race, religion, nationality, or involvement in a particular social group or political group.

Proving Asylum/Refugee Status

When you apply for asylum or refugee status, you must show that you fear persecution in your home country. Ultimately, you will need to provide evidence to back up your claim. You can show this with documents, such as police reports or newspaper articles, or by testifying what happened to you.

The United States offers different ways for refugees and asylum seekers to resettle here. The U.S. government often sponsors refugees, while asylum seekers are not sponsored. However, both groups require a good reason to be scared of persecution in their home countries.

Can I Work Under Asylum/Refugee status?

The short answer is yes. However, you need to follow a particular process to obtain work authorization. Further, the process is different for refugees and asylum seekers.

Since refugee status is obtained prior to entering the United States, refugees can work when they enter the U.S. However, asylum seekers must apply for work authorization if their application is still pending.

It’s important to know that you won’t receive employment authorization if you’ve committed any criminal offenses.

How to Apply for Work Status Under Asylum/Refugee Status

As an asylum seeker, you do not have the authorization to work until your application is approved. You must wait 150 days from submitting your asylum application until you can apply for the work authorization. After submitting your work application, you may be granted work authorization under these conditions:

  • You entered the U.S. lawfully on or after August 25, 2020.
  • You went to the scheduled biometric services appointments.
  • You arrived at your interview with the USCIS asylum officer.
  • No delay on the application.
  • No final decision has been made on your application yet.

You may receive authorization to work even if the U.S. hasn’t approved your asylum application yet. However, if the U.S. government denies your asylum application, they will reject your work authorization.

If you receive asylum approval before sending you the work authorization card, you still have the right to work. However, some people still want to have the card for personal needs.

Applying for Work authorization as Refugee 

Applying for work authorization as a refugee is similar to the process for asylum seekers. However, refugees have their status approved before they arrive in the United States to apply for work authorization from outside of the country. Therefore, refugees granted access to the U.S. are authorized to work when they arrive in the U.S. It may take some time before you receive your authorization card. Still, you can show your Form I-94 to your employer as proof of your authorization to work.

Why Hire an Immigration Lawyer in Texas

Getting work authorization for refugees and asylum seekers can be challenging to understand. The laws change a lot, so talking to an immigration lawyer in Texas who knows what they are doing is essential. This way, you can be sure that you are doing everything correctly and will get the result you need.

If you have questions about working as a refugee or asylum seeker, it is best to speak with an experienced Immigration lawyer. They will be able to help you understand the complex legal system and work towards getting you the best possible outcome for your case.

If you have any questions about working under asylum or refugee status, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Dooley Noted Law and speak with an experienced Immigration Lawyer in Texas.

The contents of this post, and the posting and viewing of the information on this post, should not be construed as, and should not be relied upon for, legal advice in any particular circumstance or fact situation. An attorney should be contacted for advice on specific legal issues.

Recommended for you

Protect Your Home From Natural Disasters

Homeowners insurance is for situations where damage is likely too expensive to cover out-of-pocket. However, a standard homeowners insurance policy will only cover problems such as theft or internal fire damage. But have you considered coverage to protect your home...

My Landlord Won’t Fix the AC

While finding great housing is tough, some tenants put up with more hassle than they should. For instance, if your landlord won't fix the AC in your rental unit, many renters feel they have no rights and must succumb to whatever the landlord says. However, this is not...

My Loved One’s Will Is Being Contested

Challenging a will can happen for a variety of reasons. Someone who believes they should have been a beneficiary might contest a will. Ultimately, if your loved one’s will is being contested, we want to prepare you with everything you need to know. This article will...