U-Visa Assistance

The U-visa is a nonimmigrant visa category established by the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act (VTVPA) in 2000 to protect victims of certain crimes who have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse and are willing to assist law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of those crimes. The primary purpose of the U-visa is to encourage victims to report crimes to law enforcement without fear of immigration consequences and to strengthen the ability of law enforcement agencies to investigate and prosecute cases of domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, and other serious crimes.

To be eligible for a U-visa an individual must:

  • Be a victim of a qualifying crime
  • Have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse as a result of the crime
  • Have information about the crime
  • Be helpful, or likely to be helpful, to law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of the crime

In order to apply for a U-visa, the victim must obtain a certification from a certifying agency, such as a law enforcement agency, prosecutor’s office, or other designated authority, confirming their cooperation in the investigation or prosecution of the crime. If granted a U-visa, the victim and certain qualifying family members can receive lawful status in the United States for up to four years. They may also be eligible to apply for employment authorization.

After three years of continuous presence in the United States with U-visa status, individuals may be eligible to apply for lawful permanent residency (green card) if they meet additional requirements, including demonstrating that they have continued to cooperate with law enforcement and are not inadmissible for certain reasons. Also, certain qualifying family members of the primary U-visa applicant, including spouses, children, and in some cases, parents and siblings, may be eligible to receive derivative U-visas based on their relationship to the victim.

With our extensive experience and established relationships with prosecutor’s offices across various jurisdictions, we facilitate the issuance of the required certification for U-visa eligibility. We understand that navigating the complexities of the U-visa application can be daunting, but with our expert legal guidance, clients can confidently overcome obstacles and pursue a brighter future. Contact our office to discuss your personal needs.