1. Refuge granted by a foreign country to individuals, especially those who face persecution elsewhere because of their social status, associations, or political beliefs. Refuge typically consists of protection from arrest and extradition. See Immigration for more information.
2. An institution that cares for the destitute or sick, especially the mentally ill.
Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary
Also sometimes called "political asylum." This is a legal status granted to someone who has fled to the United States and submitted an application proving that he or she fears persecution if forced to return to his or her home country. (The grounds are the same as for refugee status, but the application process is different -- refugees apply while they're still outside the United States.) Asylees can apply for a green card one year after their asylum approval.
Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.
August 19, 2010, 5:11 pm