Sessions Rescinds Memoranda Impacting Refugee and Asylee Right to Work

Continuing his assault on refugees and asylum seekers, Jeff Sessions rescinded Department of Justice (DOJ) guidance that dictated refugees and asylum seekers have the right to indefinitely work in the United States.

The guidance is superseded by DOJ memoranda issued in 2014 and revised in 2016, which basically lays out the same rights for refugees and asylees, but without additional guidance for employers who hire refugees and asylees. Perhaps, Sessions forgot to rescind this document as well.

In any case, rescinding a guidance does not rescind a law. Whether the Trump Administration likes it or not, individuals who are refugees and who have been granted asylum have the indefinitely right to live and work in the United States per DHS regulations. Typically, once refugee or asylum status is granted, an individual is issued an I-94 as proof of refugee or asylum status. We usually forego obtaining a work authorization card, especially if it is cost-prohibitive, and opt for the client to obtain an unrestricted social security number to present for employment verification along with the I-94 and a form of identification.

Those who have merely applied for asylum can also obtain work authorization after their applications are pending for 150 days, but no sooner than 180 days.

We hope the rescission does not negatively impact asylee and refugee rights in the workplace. If you feel you have been discriminated against for being an asylee or refugee by an employer, get in touch with us.


What do you think?

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related Articles

House GOP Suffers Setback as Impeachment of Mayorkas Fails

In a dramatic turn of events, the House of Representatives on Tuesday failed to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, falling short by a single vote in a major blow to House Republicans. The articles of impeachment, centered on accusations of mismanagement of the US-Mexico border, were ultimately defeated 214-216, with four Republicans joining all Democrats in opposition.


USCIS Fee Increases Take Effect April 1, 2024

Get ready for a change in the immigration landscape! On April 1, 2024, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will implement significant fee increases for a variety of immigration and naturalization benefits. This change, announced in January 2024, aims to help USCIS recover its operating costs more fully and support timely processing of new applications.