Clients needing legal assistance are referred to PSOT’s Legal Services Manager who is an experienced paralegal and a Board of Immigration Appeals accredited representative (DHS only).
An initial detailed Legal Assessment is performed for every client soon after a client’s acceptance into PSOT to assess the client’s immigration and legal needs. Ongoing support is provided as needed.
A substantial majority of PSOT clients are asylum seekers. When a client is not represented by an immigration attorney, PSOT works with non-profit organizations such as Human Rights First, Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, Catholic Charities, and participating law firms such as Davis, Polk and Wardwell; Thacher and Bartlett; and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom to secure pro bono legal representation.
When appropriate, PSOT clinicians provide medical and psychological affidavits for clients seeking asylum, and often testify on their behalf. This documentation from health professionals can be crucial in allowing judges to accurately evaluate the merits of a survivor’s claim. Once asylum is granted, clients receive a post-asylum assessment and PSOT’s Legal Services Manager continues to work with clients to help them obtain employment authorization, family reunification, green cards, and citizenship.