Asylum granted to pro bono client in difficult case
Clients Client M
Jones Day client Juanita M., a survivor of extreme sexual abuse at the hands of her own cousins, was granted asylum on December 23 after a six month wait. Normally, asylum applications are granted or denied after two weeks, but Juanita's case was referred to the Asylum Office headquarters in Washington, D.C. because of the complicated nature of the case. Asylum seekers must submit their applications within one year of arrival in the United States. Juanita, however, had been here for nearly seven years. Aided by Jones Day San Francisco attorneys Nandini Iyer and Michael McLively, Juanita successfully argued to the Asylum Office that she qualified for asylum and that her delay was reasonable given her struggles with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Invaluable translation services were provided by Jones Day San Francisco Legal Secretary Sandra Altamirano. The case was referred by the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights. In a partnership with LCCR, Jones Day San Francisco is now handling many asylum cases and helped win asylum for three different clients in 2010.