The Provision of Legal Information

Regardless of whether you take a client or not, intake is an opportunity to provide a client with critical legal information. At Asylum Access, we call this process an “orientation.” It often includes:

  • Parts of an Orientation
  • The refugee definition and what it means to be a refugee in the country of asylum
  • What rights are availed to them under the 1951 Refugee Convention
  • An introduction to the Refugee Status Determination process

Please read below to understand more about these three components.

Refugee Definition

This document is designed to provide trainers with a didactic tool to explain the 1951 Conventions. Trainers may opt to use this document if they feel participants need further clarification on who the 1951 Convention applies to or may simply use the tool as a supplemental visual illustration.

 An introduction to the RSD Process

The UNHCR has set forth some basic rights that should be made available to all refugee applicants no matter who the decision-making body is. It is important for the legal advisor to recognize that many of these rights may not exist under local RSD procedures even if conducted by UNHCR. However, as the UNHCR is the international body charged with implementation of the 1951 Convention, knowing these guidelines is helpful for raising procedural abnormalities and may be used on appeal against government agencies in States that are party to the Convention. Visit the Rights and Responsibilities of Asylum Seekers page of the Toolkit for more information on these basic rights and visit the RSD procedures section to learn more about the RSD process.