How to Complete Form I-589?

You can complete this form using computer, typewriter or by hand. If you are doing so by hand, you must write clearly in black ink. It is also extremely important to answer all of the questions. If a question does not apply, type or write “NA” in the appropriate space. Be sure to sign the form in the space provided. USCIS automatically rejects any forms that are incomplete and/or unsigned.

Form I-589 Application for Asylum, and for Withholding of Removal is a long form consisting of several parts. Each part has several questions. If you cannot understand any part or all of this form, you should seek help from an experienced immigration attorney.

In the first section, called “Information About You,” USCIS is asking for basic information about the person who is applying for asylum. This includes but is not limited to your full name, your gender, your marital status, where you were born, your date of birth and so on. Be sure that you are providing accurate, correct information when answering these questions. Providing false or inaccurate information on any USCIS form can have serious consequences, including the denial of your application.

In the next section, “Information About Your Spouse and Children,” USCIS is also asking for basic information. Be sure to answer the question about your husband or wife regardless of whether he or she is included in the application. If you aren’t married, simply check the applicable box. If you don’t have children, you should also mark the appropriate box. If you do have children, provided the requested information.

The next section is called, “Information About Your Background.” Here, USCIS is asking about where you have lived, your education, where you have worked and about your parents and siblings. These questions are fairly simple and you should be sure to answer them honestly.

In Part B, “Information About Your Application,” USCIS is asking you to provide specific information. This is perhaps the most important part of the application, because this is where you answer questions about your reason for seeking asylum in the United States. In particular, USCIS wants to know about any past harm that you or your family members experienced and the extent of the persecution, and your basis for fear of future harm. Again, you must be honest when you answer these questions.

In Part C, “Additional Information About Your Application,” USCIS asks a set of questions that will also be used to decide whether you qualify for asylum. Be sure to ask an immigration attorney for advice if you are unsure how to answer any of these questions.

In Part D, you are asked to provide your signature. This is where you  should write in your name (plus your name in your native alphabet if it is not the English alphabet), sign and date the application, and attach your passport-style photograph in the top right-hand corner.

If an attorney or another authorized person prepared the form, check the “yes” box in response to the question about help filling out the application.

You should also answer whether or not have you been provided with a list of free or low-cost attorneys.

Finally, don’t forget to read the certification above the signature line!

If you hired an immigration attorney to represent you, he or she should complete Part E and complete Form G-28.

DO NOT COMPLETE PART F prior to your interview at the Asylum Office. By filling out this section, you are re-affirming that the application and documentation attached are true.

You do not have to complete Part G unless you are requesting withholding of removal.

Form I-589: Supporting Documents

Along with Form I-589, you must file certain documents. Do not forget to send:

  • 1 Passport Style Photo
  • Notice of Appearance as Attorney
  • Written Declaration (explaining in detail the basis for applicant’s claim)
  • Identity Documents (passport, birth certificate, marriage certificate, etc.)
  • Witness Declarations from friends or family in home country o With original signature, copy of ID document, and notarized, if possible (if any)
  • Police Reports or Restraining Orders (if any)
  • Medical and/or Counseling Records (if any)
  • Medical and/or Psychological Expert Evaluation (if any)
  • Country Condition Reports corroborating applicant’s claim

Where to send your Form I-589

There is no filing fee, and Biometrics services may be required at no cost.

The address to which you should send your signed, completed Form I-589 and supporting documents depends on where you live. For a complete list, click on the “Where to File” tab here.