While it is possible to apply for asylum on your own without a lawyer, RIF highly recommends scheduling an appointment with a RIF lawyer first. You can request an appointment here: https://bit.ly/2DHeujm.
How to apply for asylum:
Step 1) Complete the I-589 form. It can be found here: https://www.uscis.gov/i-589. In order to complete the form, you will need your I-94 number that was issued to you when you entered the United States. You can look up that number here: https://i94.cbp.dhs.gov/.
Step 2) Mail your completed application to:
Vermont Service Center
75 Lower Welden Street
St Albans City, VT 05479
Step 3) When you are called to your interview you will visit one of the locations below:
Residents of Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island will go to:
1065 Stewart Avenue, Suite 200, Bethpage, New York
Residents of The Bronx and Manhattan will go to:
1200 Wall Street West, Fourth Floor, Lyndhurst, New Jersey
Step 4) Receive your decision from the asylum office about your case and take any necessary additional steps
*After you apply for asylum you can check the status of your case here using your receipt number: https://egov.uscis.gov/casestatus/landing.do.
New Sanctuary Coalition holds a weekly immigration clinic that can help you with the asylum application. It takes place every Wednesday at 5:30pm at 539 Thompson Street in Manhattan. More information can be found here: http://www.newsanctuarynyc.org/immigration-help/.
Applying for a work permit:
You can apply for a work permit after you apply for asylum and most likely after your asylum interview. If you are referred to immigration court after your first asylum interview, you can still get a work permit.
Your work permit must be renewed in two years. When your work permit expires, it is automatically extended for 180 days past the date of expiration on your work permit card.
The work permit application can be found: https://www.uscis.gov/i-765