Clients often ask us "Can I withdraw my asylum application?"

If you applied for an I-589, Application for Asylum and for Withholding of Removal in the United States, and want to withdraw and terminate your application, the answer is yes, you can.

Every applicant who has submitted an asylum application has the right and can withdraw their application, but you may want to consider some things first. Before moving forward, you need to be definite about your decision. Then contact your immigration attorney to help you navigate through this process.

How Do I Withdraw My Asylum Application?

To withdraw your application, you will need to submit a Declaration of Intent to Withdraw Asylum Application stating that you would like to withdraw your asylum application immediately.

The declaration will include the following:

  • Who you are (your full legal name or as noted on the application)
  • Your applicant number 
  • Your first language
  • If you used an interpreter, if so the name of that interpreter
  • The date (today's date)
  • The reason you would like to withdraw your asylum application
  • A copy of the I-589 receipt notice and the fingerprint notices

Here is an example of the declaration letter 

Once completed, you will need to send this form to the asylum office by mail or email. You will need to send it to the asylum office where your case is currently being processed. If you are unsure where that is, refer to your asylum application receipt or contact a representative using the USCIS Service and Office Locator

There are some asylum offices that will allow you to withdraw by sending your Declaration of Intent to Withdrawl Asylum Application through an email. Contact your asylum office and speak to one of their representatives. However, regardless of the mode in which you withdraw, your withdrawal has to be directly done with the asylum office.

Example Format of Asylum Application Withdrawal Letter

When you write the letter, you want to ensure that it is completed in a professional manner. Don't feel pressured if you do not write well. All you need is to be direct.

Here is a sample outline to get you started:

To whom it may concern:

I (your full legal name here) would like to withdraw my I-589- Asylum and for Withholding of Removal application which is currently pending with USCIS.

Reason: I am no longer seeking asylum because . . . (state your reason here)

My Case Number is: (Case Number Here)

Receipt notice/ date: (Today's Date)

Thank you,

(Your name again)

You can let the asylum office also know when you filed your application, and if you had your asylum interview or anything else that is relevant to your claim. Before submitting, consult your attorney to look over it so that when immigration officials receive it, they have all the required information and can move forward to cancel your claim. In some cases, citizens and immigration services may contact you for further questions.

Consequences of Withdrawing Asylum Application 

Once your withdrawal request is sent and your petition is accepted, you will be required to leave the United States. Since you withdrew your pending application, you are no longer authorized or permitted to remain in the country. If you are found here unlawfully, you may jeopardize your chances of returning to this country on a visa.

Some asylum seekers decide to withdraw because they believe it is safe to return to their country of origin and they no longer need to seek asylum which is good news. However, USCIS may question why you have automatically withdrawn and may suspect that your original claim of persecution may not have been sincere and was unfounded. They could see it as a frivolous asylum application.

For this reason, you should seek a professional and experienced immigration attorney so they can ensure your case is closed accurately and no discrepancies are noted.

If not, you can potentially impede your chances of applying for a future immigrant visa in the U.S. Keep in mind that in most cases, when asylum seekers withdraw from their application and return to their home country, they are most likely not granted a visa to the United States.

Your situation for abandoning your asylum application may be reasonable and well-founded but bear in mind that other consequences may also arise. 

How Long Does It Take to Withdraw From My Asylum Case?

Although there is not a specific time frame, your request could take anywhere from weeks to months, depending on when they update your case. You should keep an eye out and check your status or contact your asylum office for further instructions.

When Can I Withdraw My Asylum Application?

The Affirmative Asylum Procedures Manuel notes that you (the applicant) can choose to withdraw:

  • Prior to the interview (by mail or in person)
  • On the day of the interview
  • After the interview
  • Before a final decision has been made (or before your approval of status)

Sometimes your asylum case can be pending for years, and many things could have changed in your home country, but whatever the case may be, it's good to have legal representation and a good attorney who has completed the requirements with you. You can also allow them to submit the letter on your behalf if you authorize it. This usually includes a service fee if you decide to go this route.

Want to know how you can withdraw your case, contact us at Shoreline Immigration to speak to an attorney who will help you every step of the way. 

Withdraw My Asylum Application FAQs

How Long Does It Take to Withdraw from Asylum?

After you send your withdrawal letter to the Asylum Office, it can take anywhere from weeks to months. There is no certain time frame, but you can send a follow-up email to the asylum office you originally filed your application to check the status of your withdrawal.

Can I Travel Back to My Home Country after Withdrawing Pending Asylum?

Yes, you can travel to your home country, but you may not be able to return back to the united states.

When Can I Withdraw my Asylum Application?

You can withdraw from your application at any time prior to waiting for a final decision.