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On June 16, 2021, Attorney General Merrick Garland of the U.S Department of Justice issued that Matter of A-B-, 27 I&N Dec. 316 (A.G. 2018) (“A-B- I”), Matter of A-B-, 28 I&N Dec. 199 (A.G. 2021) (“A-B- II”), and Matter of L-E-A-, 27 I&N Dec. 581 (A.G. 2019) (“L-E-A- II”)  be vacated in their entirety and no longer be followed when deciding on pending and future cases. Attorney General Merrick Garland found these legal rulings threatening to create confusion among courts and discourage case by case adjudication. This is great news for victims of gang violence or domestic violence because victims can now apply for asylum with much better odds.

Previously, cases decided by Matter of A-B- and Matter of L-E-A- determined that victims of gang violence or domestic violence did not qualify based on social group standard, which is one of the grounds of asylum seekers must prove. These decisions resulted in many asylum seekers being denied asylum and were to be deported back to their countries. Asylum seekers would had to return to the dangers they escaped from with little no assistance from the government of their country. The news gives a great hope to asylum applicants and immigrant advocates.

If you are an individual seeking asylum, contact our office to evaluate your case with our expert attorney.