Canadians Cannot Apply for Asylum in the United States. True or False?


And the answer is (drumroll please…)FALSE!

Our team of U.S. Immigration lawyers realize that Canadians and foreign nationals from developed countries believe this myth. U.S. Asylum is available to all foreign nationals worldwide. One’s country of origin never determines the eligibility to apply for asylum once in the United States.

The purpose of this article is to educate and dispel the belief that developed countries, such as Canada, cannot present a strong case for asylum in United States.

Asylum is granted by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and/or defensively by the Department of Justice to individuals who meet the following test:

  1. Ongoing Persecution in their home country;
  2. The persecution is linked to race, religion, social group or political opinion;
  3. The government is persecuting its people or is unwilling/unable to protect against such persecution; and
  4. There is evidence of past persecution or well-founded fear of future persecution. INS v. Cardoza-Fonseca, 480 U.S. 421, 423 (1987).

Here is a story to illustrate…

Recently in Ontario, Canada a bill was passed that allows the Provincial Government Officials to forcibly take away children from families who follow the tenets of their Christian Faith. In effect, Christians who teach their children or encourage them that homosexuality or gender identity is spiritual and not a choice, face having their children removed from the home.; The scenarios which will lead up to a child being taken away are left to be seen in Canada. However, if a child were to tell their parents that he or she wants to be the opposite sex, and the parents respond by teaching the Christian Bible view on sexuality this would be deemed grounds for Child Welfare services to step in and take away the parent’s child. The child would then only be placed in an LGBT believing home instead and preferred over the biological parents.

Based on the above possible scenario, how would a Canadian’s application for U.S. Asylum play out?

  1. First, persecution arises when one’s child is taken by the government based on the family’s values and belief system.
  2. Second, the nexus is apparent where well established Christian based principles cause parents to be denied rights and punished.
  3. It would also follow that the government is the cause of persecution here, and government would be unwilling to protect against this religious persecution.
  4. Finally, the forcible taking of parents’ children where the Christian home teaches their faith & bible view would meet the definition of persecution. Actual past persecution and a strong possibility of future persecution are both sound grounds considered in asylum cases.

Flag and gavel

While U.S. asylum laws have clear elements to meet for those who seek asylum, it is a complex area which requires experienced U.S. Immigration Counsel who are members of the American Immigration Lawyers’ Association.

ScottVassell & LeeCC Law Firm provides free initial screening consultations with our lawyers or you may request our standard consultation. Our contact information is conveniently available at