Your asylum interview
This page explains what your asylum interview is, and when it will occur.
Your asylum interview will take place about a week after your first meeting with your case owner or his/her representative.
At the interview you will be asked to explain your reasons for seeking asylum in the United Kingdom.
You must attend your asylum interview. We can and will refuse your application for asylum if you do not attend your interview.
We will provide you with an interpreter if you need one. If you would prefer that the interpreter is specifically male or female, you should tell your case owner at your first meeting, or as soon as possible after that.
The full interview is your only chance to tell us why you fear return to your country. You must be able to satisfy your case owner about who you are and the country you are from. This is your opportunity to provide evidence of what you say and any papers you have to support your application. It is vital that you give your case owner all the information you wish to be considered. He/she will use this information to make the decision on your application.
You must answer the questions truthfully and as fully as you can. If you do not, it will damage your application. If you have previously claimed asylum in the United Kingdom or in another country, you must tell us.
At the end of the interview, you will be asked to sign the interview record to say that you have received a copy of it.
You may also be required to enrol your biometrics, as part of the asylum process. Your case owner will explain this process to you.
You may bring a legal representative, such as a solicitor, to the interview if you wish, but this is not essential. See Help and advice for more information on finding one who is qualified.
If you or your family are paying for your legal representative, you may bring him or her to your asylum interview. However, a legal representative who is claiming legal aid on your behalf may not be able to attend the interview with you, and you should ask him or her whether it is possible. If no legal representative is attending you can request that the interview be tape-recorded. You must make this request at least one day in advance.
Your case owner will not normally postpone your interview to give you more time to get legal advice or representation. If your legal representative does not attend your asylum interview, your case owner will proceed without him or her.