What kind of documents and/or evidence do you need?
Note: While you are trying to select a lawyer to represent you (and sometimes it takes time), you can already start working on getting the evidence you will need for your case. Getting these documents can also take a lot of time as it may be difficult to get them from your country. The earlier you start, the better. Your attorney will advise you and help you prepare the supporting materials needed for your asylum claim.
1. Your passport, including your I-94 card and visa to enter the country (if applicable)
(If you entered the United States without a visa, you must be able to provide other forms of evidence to prove that you are applying within one year. For example, if you can get sworn statements from people who you stayed with when you arrived, or from people back home who knew when you left, that will help prove when you arrived in the USA.)
2. Your birth certificate
3. Your marriage certificate
4. Your children’s birth certificates
5. Your affidavit – it is critical that you write a statement, separate from the answers that you provide on the I-589, detailing your experiences. An affidavit is simply another word for a sworn statement.
6. Documents that show that you are a member of the group for which you were persecuted or fear persecution (examples: membership card in a political organization or membership card for any social groups you were a member of)
7. Documents that show you were persecuted, such as:◊ threatening letters you may have received ◊ any police records ◊ letters from your friends and family in support of your application – if anyone knows about what happened to you, they can write a sworn statement in support of your case. The letters must be AS DETAILED AS POSSIBLE. ◊ medical reports: if you received any treatment in your home country, you should get those medical records and/or a letter from the people who treated you. If you have any scars or physical impairments due to the mistreatment, you should be examined by a doctor from an organization here in the United States. The RIF Center can help you with this process.
NOTE: It is important to show how you obtained those documents. So save envelopes with stamps, cover letters from faxes with the date…etc
You can also find reports about political conditions in your country on the following websites:◊ US Department of State ◊ Amnesty International ◊ Human Rights Watch ◊ Human Rights First ◊ In many newspapers (such as the New York Times) and other news sources (such as the BBC).