Those who come to Florida or any other state can seek asylum to escape political persecution or fear of violence in their home countries. However, it is unclear whether victims of domestic violence qualify for asylum. That is a question that Attorney General Jeff Sessions is attempting to answer. He is of the opinion that domestic violence is a private criminal matter as opposed to formal government persecution.
While he cannot change the law, he can make changes in how judges assess asylum applications. In countries like Honduras, police are not guaranteed to take reports from women who claim to have been assaulted by a spouse or partner. Therefore, immigration lawyers claim that they belong to a group that is entitled to protection in the United States. One attorney says that 90 percent of his clients would be sent back home if Sessions limits who has access to asylum.
It is important to note that just because an immigrant obtains a hearing doesn't necessarily mean that they get to stay in the country. Furthermore, a person's chances of getting a hearing and obtaining asylum may depend on where a case is heard. In 2016, 85 percent of cases in a Manhattan immigration court resulted in an immigrant obtaining asylum.
An individual might be eligible for asylum if they have a fear of persecution back home. Asylum could also be granted to those who fear a domestic abuser or other forms of violence in their country of origin. An attorney may be able to help an individual go through the legal process of seeking protection in the United States.