Listed below are the forms of relief most likely to apply in cases referred for pro bono assistance. There are other forms of relief that also may be available in particular cases, but most of the organizations referring cases involving immigrant children tend to refer cases where one or more of the following kinds of relief apply:
Individuals who have been persecuted or fear future persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group may be eligible for asylum. Asylum matters may be affirmative (where the application is filed with the asylum office, followed by a non-adversarial asylum interview) or defensive (where the application is filed in open court, followed by a merit hearing at which the attorney submits evidence and calls witnesses). Asylum cases for detained clients are always defensive cases and require presentation of evidence in court. Attorneys meet with their clients, draft factual declarations for the clients, gather country conditions evidence to support the cases, and draft letter briefs (to the asylum office) or legal briefs (in court).