An asylum seeker is a person who flees their home country, enters another country and applies for asylum, i.e. the right to international protection, in this other country. An asylum seeker is a type of migrant and may be a refugee, a displaced person, but not an economic migrant. Migrants are not necessarily asylum seekers. A person becomes an asylum seeker by making a formal application for the right to remain in another country and keeps that status until the application has been concluded.

What you'll get 

You can ask for somewhere to live, a cash allowance or both as an asylum seeker.

You’ll be given somewhere to live if you need it. This could be in a flat, house, hostel or bed and breakfast.
You cannot choose where you live. It’s unlikely you’ll get to live in London or south-east England.

Cash support
You’ll get £37.75 for each person in your household. This will help you pay for things you need like food, clothing and toiletries.
Your allowance will be loaded onto a debit card (ASPEN card) each week. You’ll be able to use the card to get cash from a cash machine.

If you’ve been refused asylum

You’ll be given:
somewhere to live
£35.39 per person on a payment card for food, clothing and toiletries

You will not be given:
the payment card if you do not take the offer of somewhere to live
any money
Extra money for mothers and young children

You may get free National Health Service (NHS) healthcare, such as to see a doctor or get hospital treatment.

You’ll also get:
free prescriptions for medicine
free dental care for your teeth
free eyesight tests
help paying for glasses
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