Bevándorlási és Állampolgársági Hivatal

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General information on the Hungarian asylum procedure during a mass migration crisis

If an applicant submitted an asylum application to the asylum authority of Hungary, the Immigration and Asylum Office (IAO). The authority will examine the application and will make a decision on it based on the Act LXXX of 2007 on Asylum and on Government Decree No.301/2007 (XI. 09.).

 

The applicants cooperation is also needed for the procedure to be fast and efficient.

 

In the framework of the procedure, they are obliged to share the data related to their identity and nationality, as well as to disclose the reasons for, and circumstances of, fleeing their home country.

 

Purpose of the procedure

The purpose of the asylum procedure is to establish whether requirements for Dublin transfer are applicable, whether the applicant qualify for refugee status or as a beneficiary of subsidiary protection status, and whether they can be returned to their country of origin.

 

Costs

If this is the first asylum procedure in Hungary, the IAO will carry it out free of charge. Costs of interpretation will also be covered by the IAO.

 

Assistance

If, in the course of the applicants travel, they have lost contacts with their family members, and would like to re-establish these contacts, the asylum authority may help them through the Red Cross and other humanitarian organizations. For this, it should be provided detailed personal data of the relatives and the last known place of their residence.

 

In addition to the asylum authority, the applicant have the right to seek the assistance of other individuals and organizations, thus, for instance, the assistance of lawyers, of organizations providing free legal aid and of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.


In case the applicant intend to make use of free legal aid, an employee from the authority (the territorially competent government office) staying in the transit zone will contact them and legal counsel will be appointed who is not the officer of the Hungarian state.

 

The proxy chosen by the applicant providing legal aid may

  • take part in the personal interview of the applicant;
  • have a look at the documents of the asylum procedure and make a copy of them;
  • enter the host institution to keep in touch with the applicant
  • provide assistance formulating the legal remedy petition.

 

Fingerprints and face image

Following the submission of the asylum application, provided that applicant have reached the age of 14, the Hungarian authorities will take their fingerprints and send those to the unified fingerprint database of the European Union (EURODAC) with the purpose to find out whether they have previously claimed asylum, or have stayed in another EU country. Their fingerprints stored in the EURODAC system will be handled confidentially. In addition to the fingerprints, the Office will also take a photograph of the applicant which will also be handled confidentially. 


The so-called Dublin procedure may establish the responsibility of another EU member state to conduct asylum procedure. Therefore the Hungarian authority will initiate the applicants handover to the relevant EU country, if the Dublin procedure can possibly be launched and carried out in your case.

 

Medical examination

In order to detect infectious diseases, the applicants are obliged to undergo a health screening (lungs, blood, urine, stool, as well as dermatological examination), and, if needed, to be subjected to treatment. Furthermore, the applicants are obliged to receive the missing vaccines required by law, as well as those prescribed by the competent medical authority. All this is necessary in order to protect their health and the health of the individuals at the transit zone.

 

Data related to the applicant’s health condition will be handled by the authority confidentially, with only authorized individuals having access to those.

 

Right to remain on territory

During the asylum procedure carried out in the transit zone, the applicants are not entitled to residence permit and they can not enter Hungary. The asylum authority designates the transit zone as place of residence until the final decision and exhaustion of legal remedies or a decision of Dublin transfer has become enforceable.

 

Provisions, benefits, accommodation

During the asylum procedure the applicants are housed in the transit zone. They may leave the territory of the transit zone through the exit gate. Should it be their first application, they are entitled to get accommodation, three meals a day, cutlery and sanitary equipment for personal use, clothing and free health care.

 

In case of a repeated claim and the former asylum request has been rejected or terminated with no further possibility of legal remedy, the applicant as asylum seeker are not entitled to further care. 

 

About the procedure

During the procedure the applicant will be personally interviewed by the asylum authority. At the interview they will be asked to present the reasons for their flight, the circumstances of their arrival to Hungary, and to submit the available evidence which they have not yet given over to the authority and which support your application. The applicant will be asked to explain why they were forced to leave their home country, what their reasons are for their asylum application, they have to explain the details of their persecution and the obstacles that prevent them from returning to their country of origin. It is important that they in full disclose the circumstances of their escape, specify the risk which they may face in case they return to their home country.

The asylum authority may compare their story with the up-to-date and objective country of origin information available about their country, and in case this information does not support their statements, their case may be rejected, therefore, it is crucial that the applicants honestly tell the authority what happened to them exactly.

 

A transcript of the interview will be made containing what they said. The whole transcript will be read to them after the interview by the officer, the interpreter will translate it to them from Hungarian. If they have any comments, or they wish to make corrections to the text, they should notify the officer. The transcript must contain the corrections and amendments requested by the applicant. Following this, the applicant will be asked to sign the transcript. If the applicant wish to have a copy of the transcript, the authority can provide it.

 

In case the applicant withhold a statement, they absent from the interview without justifying reasons, and/or interfere with or obstruct taking fingerprint or photograph, such actions will not prevent the asylum authority to make a decision. In this case the authority will base its decision on the available information and documents. Therefore it is in the applicant’s interest to appear at the interview and cooperate with the authority.

 

Duration of the procedure

The duration of the procedure is 60 days, however the authority has the possibility to decide in the case in a fast track procedure. The duration of certain procedural actions (e.g. validating the authenticity of the documents, translating the submitted evidence) is not included in the duration of the procedure, therefore in some cases the actual length of the procedure may be several months.

 

Acting authorities

Constitution Protection Office (AH) and Counter Terrorism Centre participate in the asylum procedure as competent authorities to decide whether the applicant’s presence may pose a risk to the Hungarian national security. The procedure of these authorities is not included in the overall processing time frame.

 

Rights and obligations

 

The applicant’s rights:

-        The applicant has the right to leave the transit zone towards Serbia at any time.

-        During the procedure the applicant has the right to use their mother tongue or any other language that they understand. On request, they will be provided with an interpreter or case worker of the same gender like them.

-        The applicant must personally take part in the asylum procedure. However, the applicant may request the presence, during the procedure, of a legal representative or of a person authorized by them. They have the possibility to seek free legal assistance, and, furthermore, to contact the Representation of the UNHCR - United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (the contact information of the relevant organizations in Hungary that provide free legal assistance can be found in the appendix to the general information note, as well as in the leaflets of the organizations).

-        The asylum authority designates the transit zone as place of residence until the final decision and exhaustion of legal remedies or a decision of Dublin transfer has become enforceable. The applicant may leave the territory of the transit zone through the exit gate.

-        In case the authority recognizes the applicant’s claim granting international protection, they can enter the territory of Hungary.

-        In case the application is submitted for the first time, during the procedure the applicant is entitled to accommodation, three meals a day, cutlery and sanitary equipment for personal use, clothing and free primary and urgent health care and hospital health care.

-        The applicant and their representative have the right to have access to the files, and to request copies of any of the documents during the procedure.

-        The applicant have the right to withdraw their asylum application at any stage of the procedure. In that case the authority will terminate the procedure or decide on the application based on the available information.

 

Obligations of the applicant:

-        During the asylum procedure the applicant is obliged to cooperate with the authority. In particular they need to provide their personal data and do all that they can to help verifying their identity. In order to do so they are obliged to contact all those people and organizations that can help them with this and do not persecute them. The applicant is obliged to clarify the reasons and circumstances of their flight and to disclose their documents (in particular: passport, identity card, other ID cards, birth certificate, marriage certificate, driving license, diploma), as well as to submit any other documents or evidence.

-        If the applicant can subsist on their own, it is their duty to immediately let the IAO know, and in case their asylum request gets rejected with no possibility of further legal remedy, they are obliged to refund the costs of care. Reimbursement obligation can be fulfilled by a postal money order or at IAO’s cash-desk.

-        During the procedure the applicant do not have the right to set foot in Hungary. Leaving the transit zone without authorization for an unknown destination or leaving the transit zone through the exit gate when the procedure is ongoing means the authority will terminate the procedure or decide on their application based on the available information.

-        For the duration of their stay in the transit zone, the applicant is obliged to respect the rules of the house. They may leave the transit zone through the exit gate only. They may leave the transit zone in exceptional circumstances (visiting family member with serious illness or attending a funeral) upon the approval of the asylum authority.

-        The applicant is obliged to report on their possessions, income, and, where appropriate, to tolerate the examination of their personal belongings, clothes and vehicle.

-        If the applicant claim to be under the age of 18 and the asylum authority questions it, a medical examination may be carried out with the purpose to establish the applicant’s age with their consent. Should hey reject the examination, the authority will consider them to be an adult.

-        If the applicant claim to be under the age of 14 and the asylum authority questions it, a medical examination may be carried out with the purpose to establish their age with their consent. Should they reject the examination, the authority will consider them to be over 14. 

-        Unaccompanied minors below the age of 14 are accommodated in a child protection institution instead of the transit zone. The authority appoints a guardian in order to have a legal representative.

-        Unaccompanied minors over the age of 14 (those who already turned 14) are housed in the transit zone and asylum procedure is performed there. The authority (the competent district office) takes care of legal representation.

-        For schoolchildren or younger minors parenting and education is provided on site.

 

 

Data protection

A representative of the asylum authority will register the applicant’s data handling those confidentially during the procedure, and will transfer such data only to those Hungarian authorities which are authorized to access it, to the UNHCR and to the courts. The asylum authority will not seek information about the applicant from their country of their origin if they are persecuted by the authorities of their country of origin.

 

 

Decisions made by the authority

If the authority decides the application is admissible, the authority examines whether they qualify for refugee status or as a beneficiary of subsidiary protection status, and whether they can be returned to their country of origin. If the authority decides that their application is inadmissible, the reasons for the decision will be communicated to the applicant.

 

The asylum authority will make the decision based on the information provided by the applicant, on the submitted and obtained evidence as well as on the basis of the available country of origin information. The decision made during the procedure will be communicated to the applicant in writing or orally. In the asylum procedure the following decisions can be made:

 

  • recognition as a refugee;
  • recognition as a beneficiary of subsidiary protection;
  • tolerated stay – special permission to remain temporarily in Hungary;
  • full rejection of the application
  • termination of the procedure.

 

The reasons for the decision (unless granted refugee status is given) will be detailed when the decision is communicated to the applicant. They can appeal to the court against the decision rejecting their application within the time limit that is indicated in the decision. The court can uphold or change the decision or can order the asylum authority to conduct the procedure from the beginning.

 

In case the application is rejected by the asylum authority, or the case is terminated because the applicant absconded and they do not hold a permit authorising them to stay in the territory of Hungary, the authority will decide on the expulsion from the territory of the European Union, which will be enforced by the alien policing authority. The asylum authority can order a ban on entry and residence.

 

In case the applicant receives the international protection specified above (receive a refugee or a beneficiary of subsidiary protection status or tolerated stay), the applicant will be granted the right of residing on the territory of Hungary.

2013 Bevándorlási Hivatal, by Chronos Systems

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