General Information for Afghan Nationals

There may be several immigration options available to Afghan nationals to obtain temporary or permanent legal immigration status in the United States, which you can read more about below.

General information about immigration options for Afghan nationals is also available from:

Special Immigrant Visa (SIV)

What is a Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) for Afghans?

SIV is a special immigration program that provides permanent immigration status to eligible Afghans who were employed by or on behalf of the US government, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), or a successor mission in Afghanistan, between October 7, 2001 and December 31, 2023. This employment must have been for a minimum of one year, and eligible Afghans must have: 1) provided faithful and valuable service to the US government, ISAF, or successor mission as documented in a positive letter of recommendation, and; 2) experienced or are experiencing an ongoing serious threat as a consequence of that employment.

Additional information about SIV for Afghan nationals is available from:


What is Asylum?

Asylum is a type of protected immigration status for people in the United States who fear to return to their country of origin.  If you are approved for asylum, you will be protected from deportation and you will be given permission to live and work in the United States.  To be approved for asylum, you must show that you meet the following criteria:

It is generally required to apply for asylum within 1 year of your arrival in the United States, though there are some exceptions.  There is no fee to apply for asylum.  

Additional information about asylum for Afghan nationals is available from:

Find answers to some frequently asked questions about asylum here

Temporary Protected Status (TPS)

What is Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Afghans?

TPS is a type of legal status allowing Afghans to remain temporary in the United States, and to have employment authorization even beyond the expiration of their current parole status.  TPS will be especially important for Afghans whose applications for some kind of permanent status take longer than one year to process, and for Afghans who may not qualify for any of the current forms of immigration permanent status.  TPS is currently available only to Afghans who arrived in the U.S. before March 15, 2022.  

You can learn more about TPS on U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service's website, and on this USCIS webpage for Afghan Nationals.

Find answers to some frequently asked questions about TPS here. 

Family Reunification

There are several different immigration options for Afghans to reunite with their family.  Your options are based on your immigration status and how you entered the United States.

Additional information about family reunification is available from:

Social Service Resources for Afghans