According to a recent article from The Hill, the Trump administration is considering a new immigration plan that would block immigrants from seeking asylum in the U.S. if they had resided in a country other than their home country prior to seeking asylum. This proposal is aimed at making the thousands of Central American migrants who have been traveling to enter the U.S. through the southern border with Mexico in recent months completely ineligible for asylum. Reportedly, the Trump administration is seeking ways either to implement this proposal legislatively or through an administrative rule, although both likely are to become the subject of litigation.
This proposed change closely accompanies the controversial “stay in Mexico” or “safe third country” policy for asylum-seekers, which is aimed at forcing individuals seeking asylum to remain in Mexico while the U.S. processes their asylum claims. For its part, the Mexican government apparently has agreed to this proposal, promising to expand a program that requires migrants to wait in Mexico while their asylum claims are pending.
Experts have criticized these moves as a fundamental reshaping of the U.S. asylum system, in direct contravention to the definitions established for asylum and refugee status by the U.N. in its 1951 convention, which the U.S. signed in the 1967 protocol and later adopted as part of American immigration laws in the Refugee Act of 1980. By requiring asylum-seekers to remain outside the U.S. or declaring them ineligible for asylum before they even apply, the Trump administration is not only changing definitions in U.S. law without legislation, but also drastically reducing the number of people who would become eligible for asylum. Our goal is to assist you with your immigration concerns, whether family or business-based. We can evaluate your situation and develop a strategy that is most likely to be efficient and effective in your case. Regardless of the immigration matter that you are facing, the attorneys of Peek & Toland have the experience, knowledge, and reputation that you want and need to advocate on your behalf. When results matter most, contact us at (512) 399-2311.