Risk Assessment

To develop non-RSD rights legal assistance, you will also need to assess the risk involved for your clients, decide whether it is worth taking a specific calculated risk, and then trying to mitigate the risk factor.

Legal Status

New clients without legal status may present a serious obstacle to providing non-RSD rights legal assistance. In some countries, clients will not have legal status until they are granted refugee status, while refugees in other countries may be granted temporary legal status as asylum seekers. Until they have legal status, clients will not be able to appear before the court or engage in non-litigation strategies for fear of making their presence known to the authorities.

Fear of Publicity

While refugees have fled their country of origin, they may still fear being discovered in their country of refuge. They may be reluctant to air their stories in a court room or put their name under public records. This barrier may be overcome using non-litigation strategies with the implied next-step of litigation, even if your client would not ultimately wish to engage in litigation. Alternatively, this may not be an issue if your legal system has provisions for protecting identities of the vulnerable.

Using Test Cases

Due to the risks associated with pursuing non-RSD rights legal assistance in some refugee cases, you may decide to choose your initial cases carefully so as to mitigate these risks and set a good precedent. You may find clients willing to take these risks after you provide an in-depth explanation, and you may also have clients for whom the risk is naturally lower due to their status or situation. You may decide to start with these cases to set a good precedent.