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Asylum Seekers - Who is an asylum seeker?

There are special rules about benefits for asylum seekers waiting for a decision on an asylum application.

Who is an asylum seeker?

According to the United Nations (UN), an asylum seeker is "a person who has left their country of origin, has applied for recognition as a refugee in another country, and is awaiting a decision on their application".

In the UK, an asylum seeker is someone who has applied for asylum and is waiting to hear whether he or she will be granted leave to stay. It is the responsibility of the Home Office to decide if a person qualifies for asylum under the 1951 UN Convention on Refugees.

As this is a very complex area of the law, it is important to seek specialist advice. You can use our Find an Adviser tool to find a local adviser to help you further.

The Refugee Council, a charity that works with asylum seekers and refugees, may also be able to advise further.


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