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The Initial Screening Process To Gain Refugee Status In The U.S.

There is a screening process that people have to go through to gain status as a refugee in the United States. The screening process starts while the person applying for refugee status is still outside the United States and is managed by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. Here is how the screening process works.

In many cases, those applying for refugee status have been referred to the USCIS by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. The criteria for referral is that a person must fear for their life because of their race, ethnicity, religion, political leanings, or because they belong to a social group that the rulers of their homeland are trying to eradicate. A refugee is not someone who has a criminal past or was a member of a group involved in the persecution of others.

Once a person has been deemed to be at risk for persecution, she can enter the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program. The USRAP will do background and security checks. USRAP is made up of a combination of both national and international agencies that have the capability to properly perform the checks. The investigation relies heavily upon information collected by using fingerprints, biographical information, and a personal interview.

Fingerprint Check

The refugee applicant will have her fingerprints taken so they can be compared to the fingerprints agencies have on record. The USRAP is specifically looking for any criminal records and evidence gathered by local, national, and international agencies that would alert the USRAP that the person has been involved in activities that would undermine their claim that they are actually refugees and not a member of a group that was persecuting others, or a criminal trying to escape justice.

Biographical Check

The biographical check is typically performed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The FBI will check immigration, criminal, and other records using the name and aliases the refugee applicant has used over her lifetime along with the applicant's date of birth.

Interview

An interview is conducted by trained personnel to help them uncover the reasons for the applicant fleeing his homeland and to capture any new information about the applicant that could result in the applicant being denied entry into the United States. The interviewer has been specifically trained on the conditions in an applicant's homeland, what types of questions to ask, and how to spot fraudulent applicants.

If the applicant successfully passes the background checks, the information gathered is passed onto the Customs and Border Patrol agency that will meet the applicant at a port of entry in the U.S. to start the process of relocating the applicant in the United States.

For more information, contact Kriezelman Burton & Associates or a similar firm.

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Choosing The Perfect Counsel

If you have ever been accused of a crime, then you know the absolute sinking feeling in your gut. It can be incredibly devastating to cope with the thought of living the rest of your life behind bars, which is why choosing the perfect counsel is crucial. I started thinking about who to work with a few years ago when I was accused of something that I knew I didn't do, and it was scary. However, I knew that by focusing on my innocence and finding the right professional, things would be manageable. Check out this blog for great information on choosing counsel.

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