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When an asylee has a child

There are certain family immigration options available to individuals who have received asylum status here in the United States. One is that, generally, if they have a child who was under the age of 21 and not married when they applied for asylum, they can request derivative asylum status for their child (such status would allow the child to live in the U.S. with them). This is the case whether the asylee is the child’s mother, father, adoptive parent (if certain timeframe rules are met) or step-parent.

As a note, such a request generally has to be made within two years of the parent having been granted asylum.

Help with the process of making such a request is among the services immigration lawyers can provide asylee parents. The application process involves a variety of steps. Among these is gathering the needed documents.

What documents does an asylee have to include when applying for this status for their child? It depends on their relationship to the child. All parents have to submit proof of their asylee status, Form I-730 and a photo of the child (clear and recent) when applying. However, what the rest of a parent’s list of required documents looks like depends on whether they are the child’s biological father, biological mother, adoptive parent or step-parent.

As this illustrates, while the option of requesting derivative asylum status for a child is available to a wide range of different types of parents, what particular type of parental relationship one has to their child impacts what specifically the application process will involve.

Source: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service, “Application Procedures: Getting Derivative Refugee or Asylum Status for your Child,” Accessed Nov. 7, 2016

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