Update on Asylum for Egyptian Copts

Since my last posting on US asylum for Egyptian Coptic Christians I have interviewed and spoken with many, many of you, both in the US and from Egypt who are interested in proceeding.  Based on my discussions with you and with 2 experts on the subject it seems that conditions in Egypt right now have clearly undergone a material change.  Although it is not as simple as simply stating “I’m a Copt and I want asylum”, it is also true that right now USCIS is favorably disposed towards these claims. Indeed, some of you are not even aware of how solid your claim for asylum really is.  This is because sometimes the facts that are important to clients in their every-day lives are different than those which USCIS considers most critical.  For example, many of you have asked if the fact that you cannot document past persecution will doom your case.  In other words, does the mere absence of any past persecution  mean that you will not qualify for asylum now.  The answer to that question is NO. After all, an asylum claim is based upon a well founded fear of “future persecution“.  So while evidence of persecution in the past may be “helpful” it is not dispositive. And having a skillful lawyer who knows the best way to present the facts of your case, as well as testimony from the most credible expert possible can help convince a Judge of the likelihood that you will be persecuted for being Christian if you are forced to return to Egypt.

So if you have been in the US for more than a year without filing a claim, do not despair.  It may still be possible.  Call my office today at 914 358-1400 to see how I may be able to help.

24 Responses to “Update on Asylum for Egyptian Copts”

  1. david on November 5th, 2011 5:12 AM

    can i ask for asylumfrom egypt am married have two childeren

  2. Ramez Youssef on July 25th, 2012 4:52 AM

    Hello
    I’am Egyptian and I live in Egypt and my religion is Bahai and in Egypt we suffer a lot Persecution since Egypt is Islamic country :
    – the Egyptian government refuses to officialy recognize Bahai faith and if a religious group bypasses the official registration process, participants are potentially subject to detention and could also face prosecution and punishment under article 98(F) of the penal code, which forbids the “denigration of religions.”
    -we suffer severe official discrimination e.g. government doesn’t recognize Bahai’s marriage and refuses to issue Identity card for married Bahai unless they specify their marital status as “single” and there is no civil marriage in Egypt so any couple who live with each other without official document of marriage are subjected to harm by adultery charge from government and direct harm from Islamic conservative community.
    -also I am suffering great threats since Egyptian court stated that ”any one who adopts Bahai faith is apostate” , and the same was stated by Al Azhar which is the official islamic reference in Egypt, and the penalty of apostasy in Islam is death , also a leader in the ‘Nour political party’ called ‘Abd El Monem El Shahat’ menaced Bahai’s in Television show that they will be prosecuted by the charge of Treason
    -also many Bahai’s suffered burning of their home and the government ignored them and judge stated to remove the custody of the children one Bahai because of his religion.
    -and now I am living misrepresenting myself in my official papers as a Christian, since government till 2009 refused to issue any official documents for those who aren’t muslims , christians or jews. In 2009 court ruled to issue official documents for Bahai’s with dash in their religion item and unmarried in their marital status, so to protect the members of Islam from Bahai’s infiltration and their potential dangers.
    Note: Majority of this Events was noted by the last “International Religious Freedom report” by the State Department
    and here is it’s link: http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/171733.pdf
    and I want to ask if there is chance to get asylum in USA?
    and what is your advise to me?
    thank you for your concern

  3. Karyn Schiller on August 15th, 2012 1:20 PM

    Ramez,
    I am well aware of this history of persecution that the Bahai’s have endured in Egypt and elsewhere in the Middle East. If you can find your way to the USA I would be glad to advise you on the prospect of receiving political asylum here. Best of luck.

  4. Hello on November 18th, 2012 7:09 AM

    Hello,I’m 16 Years Old And I Have A B2 Visa For 5 Years,I’ve Visited The USA From 2 Months Ago And Now I Would Like To Live There And Attend A Public High School,Can I ? And How I Can Get A Legal Life ?

  5. Karyn Schiller on November 29th, 2012 12:47 PM

    This is not a question that can be answered in this forum. It depends upon many factors that are personal to your situation. Please be sure to contact a competent immigration attorney for advice

  6. salem on December 12th, 2012 5:12 PM

    Me and my wife are on a visiting visa and our daughter wa born here 7 months ago.we are muslim from egypt.we would like to apply for asylum because we are afraid of the FGM and it is also too dangerous there..
    would you help us with that?? if yes please let me know so we can contact you

  7. Karyn Schiller on January 13th, 2013 10:25 AM

    Salem, please contact my office to discuss further. Asylum is a complicated issue and not something that we can discuss in a public forum. You can reach my office at 914 358-1400

  8. Ash on April 4th, 2013 4:59 PM

    I’am Egyptian and I live in the states right now under J1 Visa, and my religion is Copt Christian, and in Egypt we suffer a lot Persecution since one of the Moslem Brotherhood became a president. I am afriad to go back because of future persecution. My question is can i apply while i am in J1 visa, and how much the process will cost.

  9. Ash on April 7th, 2013 1:00 PM

    I am a Coptic Christian from Egypt live in the US, am I eligible for asylum although I have not been personally physically harmed

  10. Karyn Schiller on April 16th, 2013 1:29 PM

    The standard for asylum is that you can show a well founded fear of persecution in the FUTURE. Evidence of past physical harm can be a good indication that you may be harmed in the future, but is not the only evidence that can be used. So in short, the answer to your question is that past physical harm is helpful but not necessary.

  11. Karyn Schiller on April 16th, 2013 1:31 PM

    There is no reason why a J-1 cannot apply for asylum. Unfortunately, however, I do not discuss fees in a public forum. I would be glad to discuss your case in greater detail if you contact my office – 914 358-1400

  12. sally on May 12th, 2013 7:35 AM

    hello,
    my husband is in U.S.A. in the state of N.Y. what is the chance of getting the approval for the asylum from the officer before the court in that state in general ?
    and if he got the asylum is it a must to send his family the needed documents for them to the same adress in their egyptian I.D. or it is possible to change the adress of the rest of the family in Egypt ??
    THANK YOU

  13. Karyn Schiller on May 30th, 2013 5:42 PM

    I cannot answer that question without a lot more information. It depends upon the facts of his own case and whether he can show that he was either persecuted in the past or has a well founded fear of persecution of he return to Egypt. You can ask him to call my office at 914 358-1400 for a consultation.

  14. HANI on August 31st, 2013 12:40 AM

    we are Christian family live in Egypt , have two girls (15 + 19 Years )
    would like to settle in the US since a lot of fears facing our family due to increase of Islamic fanatic groups in the society .

    The life of Christian female in Egypt have a lot of risk of sexual harassment .
    I have a tourist visa for US and would like to come and settle with my family there .

  15. Karyn Schiller on September 3rd, 2013 6:29 PM

    As I have written about, Christian’s in Egypt often qualify for asylum in the United States. However, each case depends upon its own circumstances. I would be glad to assist you once you arrive in the US.

  16. Karyn Schiller on September 3rd, 2013 6:30 PM

    Female genital mutilation (circumcision) can be the basis for a claim of asylum.

  17. Karyn Schiller on September 3rd, 2013 6:31 PM

    I cannot estimate your chance of successfully claiming asylum without knowing more details about your life. Bahai’s are definitely recognized as a persecuted minority in the Middle East (except for in Israel where they are not persecuted), but I would need more details.

  18. Albeir on September 6th, 2013 4:02 PM

    Hi,Can my sister file for asylum in USA embassy in Egypt, or she have to come here first? Thank You,

  19. nael on September 8th, 2013 4:10 PM

    i amegyption and leaving in Iran more than 1 year and i converted to She3a ,She3a are facing a lot of issues in egypt i have 2 kids one is american and we are now in USA in B1/B2 visa my self wife and doughter egyption and son american .What is our chance to apply for Asylum now .rgds nael

  20. Karyn Schiller on September 9th, 2013 11:43 AM

    She can apply at the Embassy, BUT if she is denied there is no way to appeal. It is definitely far preferable to apply from within the US.

  21. Karyn Schiller on September 9th, 2013 11:45 AM

    Your situation is complicated because you may already have what is known as “firm resettlement” in Iran. Are you able to return to live in Iran or are you required to return to Egypt? I would need more detail about your circumstances to assess your chance of asylum.

  22. nael on September 10th, 2013 2:50 AM

    No i am not able to return to Iran as i left my jobe there so the only thing is to leave USA directly to egypt my country .rgds nael

  23. Caroline on December 16th, 2013 4:58 PM

    hi, I would like to ask if i have a strong case for asylum. I’m Christian I came 3 times before to the US in 2008, 2011, 2013 and now I am coming to study for one year in UCLA on an F1 visa. I don not wish to return back home after this 1 year. Can you help me? Thank you.

  24. Karyn Schiller on December 17th, 2013 12:17 PM

    Thank you for contacting my office. I cannot answer that question without more information. Just being an Egyptian Christian does not automatically qualify you for asylum. Rather, it will depend upon your own circumstances in terms of past and the reasonable likelihood of future persecution. If you would like to set up a phone consultation, please contact my office at 914 358-1400, although I do recommend that you seek out an attorney in LA.

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