While your asylum interview is a critical piece to obtaining asylum, you cannot always predict the cards life hands you. There may be various reasons why you cannot make your appointment. According to the USCIS, if you fail to appear, the asylum office can deny your request.
To avoid harming your case, there are ways you can reschedule.
How can you reschedule your interview?
If you know in advance that you cannot make it to your interview, you need to mail, fax or email a letter to the asylum office or arrive in person to reschedule. Do not attempt to call the asylum office because they cannot honor the request over the phone. In your request, include your reason for the request and any evidence for it.
You should receive a letter explaining whether the office approved the request. In addition, you will receive the new date.
What if you do not reschedule in time?
If you have an emergency or other event that makes it difficult to do your interview without prior notice, you can still reschedule. After the date of your interview, you will receive a Failure to Appear Warning Letter. The letter explains how to request a reschedule and how the case will move to removal proceedings if you do not. You have 45 days to ask to reschedule the interview.
If you do not request within 45 days, you may still have a chance to request a new appointment. To do so, you need to prove that you had exceptional circumstances. Exceptional circumstances may include cruelty or battery towards you, your children or parents, severe illness or the death of a child, parent or spouse.
With most requests, you need to show reasonable circumstances for missing your interview.