Law 796:  Humanitarian Relief in U.S. Immigration Law

This course will provide an in-depth exploration of humanitarian relief available under U.S. immigration law with an emphasis on refugee and asylum law and the related protections of withholding of removal and the Convention Against Torture. Students will look at the definitions of refugee and asylum in historical and international context and will examine how these definitions relate to cases in the U.S. today in light of current debates and the sweeping changes that have occurred in this area of law over the past few years.

The first part of the course will cover the following topics: the international origins of Refugee Law; the relationship between international and U.S. law; protections against persecution on account of political opinion, religion, race, nationality, and social group; gender-related claims; national and international qualifications and limitations on protection; and the mechanics of the asylum process. The latter part of the course will move beyond asylum and look at other forms of relief available for forced migrants including Temporary Protected Status (TPS), Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS), Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), T and U visas for victims of trafficking and other crimes, VAWA, and Humanitarian Parole.

Sequence and Prerequisites: Immigration Law is helpful but not required.

Evaluation: Administered Final Examination.

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