Fairfax Asylum Interviews

The asylum interview happens in a USCIS office for people who are applying affirmatively for asylum. The interview process will be done with a USCIS adjudicator and it is an extensive back and forth between a person and the adjudicator that will go over every aspect of the claim, as well as all the evidence and the details of included in the application.

Because of the extensive nature of the Fairfax asylum interviews, it is extremely helpful to work with an experienced local lawyer. Such an attorney can help you prepare and undergo the interview process.

Interview Process

The process to be granted in an interview is that a person initially submits their application through the mail to the Texas Service Center and they will process their file, schedule fingerprints, and forward their case into the appropriate asylum office where they will be scheduled for an interview. They need to wait for their interview to be scheduled again.

That timeframe for the waiting period will differ depending on where a person is applying but here in Virginia, which is the Washington Field Office, it is about a two-year wait right now for most applicants. If it is a fairly straightforward asylum case and there are issues with proving a particular social group or there is not a lot of details to their claim, then it could be just a couple of hours but in most cases, it is quite a bit longer. It can be all day and it is really an exhausting eight-hour interview and a person can be brought back for further questioning as well if they have more questions about the case.

How to Prepare

The most important thing is to be intimately familiar with every single letter of the application that a person has submitted. It has been the case that cases are denied because the applicant does not remember some minor detail.

For instance, in a case of a kidnapping, it is important to remember details such as whether the abduction took place in a car or a van. If there is a discrepancy in the small details, that can cause officials to question the veracity of the entire case.

If there are inconsistencies in the dates between someone’s application form and their declaration, or between the declaration and oral statements, that is going to damage their credibility. And if someone is deemed to be not credible, then the case is much, much more likely to be denied.

Interpreters

A person is required to bring their own interpreter in the USCIS setting. However, the USCIS will call in a third party interpreter that will be present over a speaker phone, and whose job it is to monitor the interpretation, ensuring that interpreters do not misrepresent what the applicant is saying in an effort to sabotage or help them.

It is the hope that the interpretation will be seamless and will convey a person’s story the way they want it to be told. However, there can be problems of interpretation, especially when a person is talking about minor details that can be so important.

Problems with interpretation can significantly affect the chances of the applicant. Therefore, a person ought to be very confident in the interpreter they have chosen, reviewing the case extensively with them prior to the interview.

Potential Fraud

While there are no official biases in the asylum interview process, there have been cases of asylum fraud, where it is heard that people from a certain type of social group and a certain type of story will automatically grant asylum. There have been repeated claims and identical statements submitted from people then that would definitely trigger more scrutiny. Because of that, officials take every measure to avoid instances of fraud.

How An Attorney Can Help

The process of Fairfax asylum interviews can be intimidating and exhausting. Hiring a Fairfax asylum lawyer help you prepare for and navigate the entire process will be one of the most effective steps you can take to increase your chances of success.