Department of Homeland Security and Department of Justice published final rules regarding barring asylum to those who on their way to the United States transited through a different country. The new rule goes into effect on January 19, 2021.
To qualify for asylum, an applicant will have to demonstrate that either he/she filed for asylum or similar protection in one of the countries she transited through on the way to the USA, and received a final judgment of denial; or that the alien is the victim of severe human trafficking; or that all the countries the person transited through are not part to the International treaties protecting refugees: 1951 United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees or the 1967 Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees.
The rule will be applied to those asylum seekers who enter or attempt to enter the United States across the southern land border. It will be applied to all asylum seekers who do not meet exceptions, including unaccompanied minors. The rule will be used in connection with credible fear screening as well, necessary limiting the number of persons who may qualify to see the judge.
A usual route for someone from Central America would include crossing Guatemala and Mexico. These countries traditionally are not considered safe for asylum seekers, and as a rule, persons who are fleeing violence would not seek protection in Guatemala, where there is a high crime rate and violence of its own.
Note that this rule will not be applied to those entering the US via airports, or by the sea, entering the United States at other borders.
This new rule adds on to the incoming restrictions and modifications for asylum eligibility that will go into effect on January 11, 2021.
If you need help with an asylum case, call us at 917 885 2261 to reserve a confidential consultation.