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I have acquaintances in South Africa who are Europeans and I would like to sponsor them as immigrants to the U.S.

Alexandria, VA |

Genocide Watch, a foundation monitoring violence around the globe, estimates the Europeans in South Africa are facing Stage Six of the Seven Stages leading up to genocide. Stage Seven is actual genocide. There is currently widespread and random violence against Europeans there and they have all been officially excluded from the labor market. I cannot sponsor these acquaintances as refugees (refugees must have already fled to a secondary nation) and I cannot sponsor them as immigrants as immigration into the U.S. is now largely based on family reunification or based on the immigrant filling a job vacancy the sponsor offers to him or her. Is there any way I can still sponsor these individuals? Perhaps by bringing them in as students/tourists and then applying for refugee status?

Attorney Answers 5


I suggest that you start by paying an attorney for a consultation. Many of us use Skype. Our office uses Skype Pro, which would all you, your friends, and an attorney to talk at the same time.

Your basic research seems valid regarding their not qualifying as refugees, family, nor employment sponsors.

I assume that you/they have also tried the visa lottery.

Student may work. But, it is a non-immigrant visa which requires that they have strong ties to their homeland and don't want to abandon those ties ... something which could cause a problem if they attempted to request asylum after entering the US ... they can be accused of committing visa fraud as a result of not being honest with the Consular Officer and/or the immigration inspector at the airport.

A consultation is the way to go.

PROFESSOR OF IMMIGRATION LAW for over 10 years -- This blog posting is offered for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Also, keep in mind that this is an INTERNET BLOG. You should not rely on anything you read here to make decisions which impact on your life. Meet with an attorney, via Skype, or in person, to obtain competent personal and professional guidance.

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You need to consult with an experienced Immigration Attorney who can address your specific issues and advise you accordingly.

Law Offices of J Thomas Smith J.D., Ph.D 11500 Northwest Freeway, Suite 280 Houston, TX 77092 713-LAWYER-2 NOTE: Responses are for the education of the community at large and is not intended to be "legal advice." No attorney-client relationship is established by responses or comments.

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There are a number of ways they can come to the US, but their individual circumstances will determine whether or not they will be able. Consult with an immigration attorney.

The answer provided here is general in nature and does not take into account other factors that may need to be reviewed for a more precise answer. You should consult with an immigration attorney before taking any action. The answer here is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.

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If they enter the U.S., they can apply for asylum.

Asylum in the U.S. may be granted if the applicant can demonstrate a “well-founded fear of persecution” based on (1) political opinion, (2) religion, (3) race, (4) nationality, or (5) membership in a particular social group. A person who is outside the U.S. may apply for refugee status based on these same criteria. The Refugee Act of 1980 conforms US immigration laws with various UN conventions and protocols.

The fear of persecution must be either by the government of one’s country or by a group that the government is unable to control.

If the person is able to establish “past persecution”, a presumption arises that he has established a well-founded fear of persecution. The burden of proof shifts to the government to demonstrate that circumstances have changed and that the person no longer has a well-founded fear of persecution or that the person could avoid persecution by relocating in another part of his country and that it would be reasonable for him to do so.

Please click the link at the very bottom for additional information.

Carl Shusterman, Esq.
Former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82)
Board Certified Immigration Attorney (1986 - Present)
Schedule a Legal Consultation - Telephonic, Skype or In-Person
600 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1550
Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 394-4554 x0
Web: (English) (Spanish)

(213) 394-4554 x0 Mr. Shusterman is a former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82) with over 35 years of immigration experience. His response to your question is general in nature, as not all the facts are known to him. You should retain an attorney experienced in immigration law to review all the facts in your case in order to receive advice specific to your case. Mr. Shusterman's statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.

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This is a complicated question that is beyond the scope oft his forum. I'd highly recommend that you consult with an immigration attorney, whether myself or one of my colleagues, to discuss your options and come up with the best strategy.

The statement above does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is intended as general information only and it is not a substitute for legal advice. You should consult with a licensed attorney to discuss the specific facts and circumstances of your case.

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