Evidence is anything that you give to Home Office to support your claim, including what you say. Interview records, statements, documents, letters, reports, statements from other witnesses are all evidence.
You need to explain in detail why you fear being persecuted in your country of origin. Many Home Office refusals of LGBTQI+ asylum claims are because they don’t believe the applicants are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer or intersex. It is therefore important to be prepared to talk about your experience in relation to your sexual orientation, gender identity or sex characteristics. This does not mean talking about sex, but how you came to be who you are as a person. You must get professional translations for any evidence written in other languages into English.
Below are the main categories of evidence but there can be others as well.
Your statement should describe your experiences as an LGBTQI+ person. Your statement should also give details of any persecution you may have suffered in the past. It could include descriptions of any relationships you may have had. If relevant, you should write an explanation about why you did not claim asylum earlier. You will also need to explain why you fear returning to your country and why you believe you would be persecuted.
Your statement is your main piece of evidence, and your lawyer should help you prepare it. Usually, you would start with a description of your family, your education and any employment you may have had in your country of origin or elsewhere. You should provide some details of your journey to the UK. You then need to explain any experiences or incidents relevant to your case. Describe them in the order they happened, ending with the reason why you decided to leave your country. If you were persecuted in the past, or managed to avoid persecution, you need to describe that.
At the end you need to explain why you are scared to go back and who or what you fear.
Witness statements or letters of support
Witness statements or letters from friends, family and current or former partners can support what you say about your sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression or sex characteristics and, if applicable, anything that has happened to you. Not everybody will have, or need, statements like these.
Witness statements or letters need to be signed and dated. The witness should provide their full name and address and attach a copy of their ID. They should only comment on what they know first-hand, and not speculate on what the risk would be if you returned to your country of origin. If a witness sends a letter from abroad, make sure you keep the envelope.
If, for example, you were attacked in your country of origin or you suffer from a medical condition, a report from a doctor or the hospital where you were treated can be important.
Information which shows what the situation is in your country of origin for LGBTQI+ people, such as human rights reports and press articles, can be useful to show that there is a risk of harm. The Home Office should have access to information about what is happening in every country and has Country Policy and Information Notes about many countries. The Home Office will analyse the country information and decide if they think the situation in your country means that there is a real risk of serious harm which you fear. It will help your case, however, if you can submit evidence to support your claim that LGBTQI+ people in your country are persecuted.