Have you been a victim of Fraud, Robbery or Armed Assault? You could you qualify for the U Visa.
The U Visa gives you a Legal Status that is valid for 4 years with a work permit and Social Security. After the third year of having the U Visa, you can apply for Permanent Residence. Main requirements to apply for the U Visa: 1. Have been the victim of a crime that qualifies you for the U Visa, such as Assault or Armed Robbery; 2. Having suffered physical or psychological consequences as a result of the crime; 3. Have cooperated with the Investigation of the Crime; 4. Obtain a U Visa Certification that proves that you really cooperated with the investigation of the crime, this certification must be issued by the Police or the Prosecutor in charge of the case.
Victims of Criminal Activity: U Nonimmigrant Status
The U nonimmigrant status (U visa) is set aside for victims of certain crimes who have suffered mental or physical abuse and are helpful to law enforcement or government officials in the investigation or prosecution of criminal activity. Congress created the U nonimmigrant visa with the passage of the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act (including the Battered Immigrant Women’s Protection Act) in October 2000. The legislation was intended to strengthen the ability of law enforcement agencies to investigate and prosecute cases of domestic violence, sexual assault, trafficking of noncitizens and other crimes, while also protecting victims of crimes who have suffered substantial mental or physical abuse due to the crime and are willing to help law enforcement authorities in the investigation or prosecution of the criminal activity. The legislation also helps law enforcement agencies to better serve victims of crimes.
You may be eligible for a U nonimmigrant visa if:
- You are the victim of qualifying criminal activity.
- You have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse because of having been a victim of criminal activity.
- You have information about the criminal activity. If you are under the age of 16 or unable to provide information due to a disability, a parent, guardian, or next friend may possess the information about the crime on your behalf.
- You were helpful, are helpful, or are likely to be helpful to law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of the crime. If you are under the age of 16 or unable to provide information due to a disability, a parent, guardian, or next friend may assist law enforcement on your behalf.
- The crime occurred in the United States or violated U.S. laws.
- You are admissible to the United States. If you are not admissible, you may apply for a waiver on a Form I-192, Application for Advance Permission to Enter as a Nonimmigrant.
Qualifying Criminal Activities: Abduction, Abusive Sexual Contact, Blackmail, Domestic Violence, Extortion, False Imprisonment, Female Genital Mutilation, Felonious Assault, Fraud in Foreign Labor Contracting, Hostage, Involuntary Servitude, Kidnapping, Manslaughter, Murder, Obstruction of Justice, Peonage, Prostitution, Rape, Sexual Assault, Sexual Exploitation, Slave Trade, Stalking, Torture, Trafficking, Witness Tampering, Unlawful Criminal Restraint, Other Related Crimes. Includes any similar activity where the elements of the crime are substantially similar.
Also includes attempt, conspiracy, or solicitation to commit any of the above and other related crimes.
To apply (petition) for a U nonimmigrant status, submit:
- Form I-918, Petition for U Nonimmigrant Status
- Form I-918, Supplement B, U Nonimmigrant Status Certification. The Form I-918, Supplement B, must be signed by an authorized official of the certifying law enforcement agency (PDF, 948.64 KB) and the official must confirm that you were helpful, and currently being helpful, or will likely be helpful in the investigation or prosecution of the case.
- If any inadmissibility issues are present, you must file a Form I-192, Application for Advance Permission to Enter as Nonimmigrant, to request a waiver of the inadmissibility;
- A personal statement describing the criminal activity of which you were a victim; and
You may also apply (petition) for U nonimmigrant status if you are outside the United States. To do this, you must:
- File all the necessary forms for U nonimmigrant status with the Vermont Service Center.
- Follow all instructions that are sent from the Vermont Service Center, which will include having your fingerprints taken at the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
- If your petition is approved, you must Consular Process to enter the United States, which will include an interview with a consular officer at the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
Filing for Qualifying Family Members
Certain qualifying family members are eligible for a derivative U visa based on their relationship to you, the principal, filing for the U visa. The principal petitioner must have their petition for a U visa approved before their family members can be eligible for their own derivative U visa.If you, the principal, are under 21 years of age, you may petition on behalf of your spouse, children, parents and unmarried siblings under age 18. If you, the principal, are 21 years of age and older, you may petition on behalf of your spouse and children.
As you can see, there are many facets to eligibility of a U Visa, and it’s important to contact an Immigration attorney if you think you qualify. At The Werner Law Group, we will evaluate your case based on your experiences, and choose the best path forward based on current immigration laws. Someone from our immigration department is always available seven days a week at 361-LUV-4USA (361-588-4872). You may also text our immigration department at 361-885-2883. Se habla Espanol.