Subject: Law
Topic: IRAC MEMO
Language: English (U.S.)
Pages: 4
Instructions
In this case, Andrei Bălan, a citizen of Romania, has contacted our firm and asked for our opinion on whether he has a case for asylum in the United States. You are a lawyer working for the firm. A memorandum from your “senior partner” is attached, in which the senior partner asks you to prepare a written analysis of the case, in the form of an office memo on the case. The senior partner has provided you with some information on the facts of the case and has also given you a “library” of the legal authorities. These consist of statutes, regulations, and three cases.

MEMORANDUM

To:

From:

Date:

Re: Andrei Balan’s Asylum Petition


Issue

           Whether the 16-year-old Andrei Balan from Romania is eligible for asylum in the United States.  

Rules

Rule:

According to INA § 208, 8 U.S.C. § 1158 (a) (2), an individual may be granted asylum if he is present in the United States when seeking the asylum. The individual must also have applied for asylum within a year from the time of his arrival. He should also demonstrate an unwillingness to go back to his country owing to past persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution once he returns to his home country.


Persecution could be a cumulative effect or the being inflicted harm that the victim deems offensive. Persecution could also be in economic form whereby the perpetrators have caused serious economic harm to the individual in the past. Furthermore, for it to be considered persecution the perpetrators of the act need to be government officials or individuals that the government has refused to exercise control over probably due to extortion or bribery.


The rules stipulate that an individual who has evidence of past persecution already have a well-founded fear of persecution if he returns to his country of origin. The individual needs to present real and reasonable evidence to support his claim of having a well-founded fear of returning to his nation of origin. He needs to demonstrate that he was persecuted because he belonged to a particular social group or because of his political opinion. In the case of PSG, he needs to show that the group can be narrowly defined and it shares common immutable characteristics. In the case of persecution due to political opinion, it is important to note that political opinion could be imputed.


However, the claim for well-founded fear of persecution may be revoked if and when the circumstances surrounding the persecution have changed or if the individual can avoid further persecution if he moves to a different part of the country. It should be noted that even if the individual can no longer claim well-founded fear of persecution as his defense, he could still seek asylum based on the severity of past persecution, which causes him to be unwilling to go back to his home country.


The individual will not be granted asylum if he took part in the persecution of others on the basis of discrimination. His application will also be rejected if he was convicted of a serious crime in his home country or he is believed to pose a serious security threat in the United States. In addition, his application will be turned down if he was firmly resettled in another country before coming to the United States.


Application

           Any individual who is a refugee can seek asylum in the United States if he or she follows the procedural rules and applies for asylum within one year of entering the US. To qualify as a refugee, Andrei must demonstrate that he is a Romanian citizen; he is unwilling or unable to return to Romania, is unable to avail himself to the protections of his country, and has a well-founded fear of persecution in his country based on the imputed political opinions of his parents. He can also show that he has been persecuted because he belongs to a particular social group in Romania.


A.   Andrei must satisfy procedural requirements to be eligible for asylum in the United States and prove that he is a refugee.

           To be eligible for asylum, Andrei needs to demonstrate that he has been living in the US and that he has filed his application for asylum within one year of his arrival in the country. INA § 208, 8 U.S.C. § 1158 (a) (2). Andrei and his mother arrived in the country in June 1, 2016 and he has until July 2017 to apply for his asylum.


           The INA § 101 (a) (42), 8 U.S.C. § 1101 (a) (42) also requires that a person seeking to qualify as a refugee needs to be from another country and is outside his country of origin. Andrei is from Romania and physically present in the U.S.


B.    To establish that he is a refugee, Andrei must show that he is unable or unwilling to return to Romania.


C.   Andrei must also prove that he is unwilling or unable to avail himself to the protection of his country because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution based on his religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group or political opinion.


To qualify as a refugee, Andrei must show that he is unable or unwilling to avail himself to the protections of his country because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution because of membership in a particular social group. INA § 101 (a) (42), 8 U.S.C. § 1101 (a) (42).


1.     Unable or unwilling to avail himself to the protections of his government

Andrei is unwilling to avail himself to the protections of his government because he claims he was attacked because of his cerebral palsy and the police refused to investigate. The perpetrators of this persecution were groups that the government refused to control. Furthermore, his parents belonged to a particular social group, which led to them being persecuted for their political beliefs and Andrei to suffer persecution based on imputed political opinions.    


2.     Economic and Physical Persecution

Andrei also needs to demonstrate that he has been persecuted, which is the infliction of suffering or harm upon those who differ in a way regarded as offensive. Krotova. Andrei was taken to the hospital twice because of the abuse that was perpetrated by individuals the government could not control. His father was laid off due to his participation in the union, which constitutes persecution in the sense that egregious economic harm has been caused. Furthermore, his mother was attacked with stones and had her tires slashed after she gave a union talk, and this is tantamount to physical persecution.


3.     Well-Founded Fear of Persecution

Andrei needs to show that he has a well-founded fear of prosecution by demonstrating the severity of past acts of persecution and the fact that if he returns to Romania, he will be persecuted because of his parents’ membership to a particular social group.


4.     Andrei must prove that the persecution or well-founded fear of persecution is because of his participation in a particular social group or the imputed political opinions of his parents.


a)     Participation in a particular social group

b)     Imputed political opinions of his parents


Conclusion

           Andrei can have a strong case for being granted asylum in the US if he follows the rules and procedures for asylum seeking in the country. He needs to demonstrate that he is a refugee, has applied for asylum within a year of his arrival, he has well-founded fear of future persecution because he belongs to a particular social group and that he has experienced past persecution from individuals the government refuses to control owing to his parents imputed political beliefs.