Boston U-Visa Lawyer for Victims of Crime
What is a U Visa?
The U Visa provides immigration benefits for victims of certain crimes in the United States. This program was created by the Congress in 2005 and helps victims who have suffered mental or physical abuse as a result of the crime, and helping law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of the criminal case.
Who is Eligible for U Visa in the US?
The requirements to be eligible for a U Visa are:
- The alien must be a victim of a qualifying crime which includes: domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, obstruction of justice or witness tampering, kidnapping, extortion, felonious assault, and the solicitation to commit any of these crimes, among others.
- As a result of the crime, the alien must have suffered mental or physical abuse.
- The victim has information about the crime and he/she has provided or is providing assistance to a law enforcement official or the court in the investigation or prosecution of the crime.
- The crime has occurred in the United States or has violated the U.S. law.
- The government official must sign a certification form attesting that the alien has assisted the government in the criminal case.
Our U Visa lawyers in Boston can help you to determine if you are a victim of a qualifying crime in order to apply for U Visa and they can advise you about how to collaborate with the enforcement law and how to get the certification needed. Call today at 617-523-6320 to schedule an initial consultation with one of our attorneys in Boston, Massachusetts.
How Long Does a U Visa Last?
What if the Government Does Not Want to Proceed with the Criminal Case?
The government does not have to initiate, proceed with or complete a criminal case in order for a victim to be able to apply for a U Visa.
What is the Visa Duration Once it is Granted?
Once the U Visa is granted, it is valid for 4 years and it might be extended for an additional period of time.
Can I Adjust Status after the U Visa is Granted?
The alien must meet the following requirements in order to adjust status to a Legal Permanent Resident ( Green Card holder):
- The applicant must have lived in the United States continuously for the last 3 years with a U Visa.
- The alien has not refused to provide assistance to law enforcement since he/she was granted the U Visa.
U Visa Benefits for Family Members of The Victim
The immediate family members (spouses and in certain cases children, parents and even brother and sisters) may be eligible for the same benefits as the victim of the crime, which allows them to live, study or work legally in the United States.
What Documentation Do I need for an U Visa Case?
The victim has to provide medical records which demonstrate that he/she has received treatment as a result of the physical and/or psychological suffering from the crime that he/she has been victim. In addition to that, they also need to provide:
- Alien´s Passport
- Alien´s Birth Certificate (translated if necessary)
- Marriage Certificate (if applicable and translated if necessary)
- Divorce Certificate(s) (if applicable and translated if necessary)
- Copy of any and all prior immigration applications (if applicable)
- Court records (immigration or criminal proceedings)
- Evidence that criminal conduct caused suffering (counseling or medical records)
- Documents for criminal case for which you were a Victim
- Police reports;
- Documents from judges and other court officials; (Restraining Orders, etc.)
- Documents from medical personnel;
- Documents from school officials;
- Documents from clergy, social workers, and other social service agency personnel.
- Signed Statement about the incident and its impact on victim.
- Certification from the government official that victim was helpful to the prosecution
Should the Victim Cooperate with the Government to be Eligible for a U Visa?
Yes. One of the requirements of eligibility for a U Visa is that the victim must demonstrate that he/she provided information to the law enforcement agency or the court which is investigating the crime or that the assistance was not unreasonably withheld.
What is the U Visa Process Like?
The process usually takes 24 to 36 months:
- Complete and file Form I-918 (Petition for U Nonimmigrant Status), Form I-918 Supplement B (Nonimmigrant Status Certification, which must be signed by a government officer) and the supporting documents.
- Complete and file Form I-192 (Application for Advanced Permission to Enter as a Nonimmigrant) if there is any inadmissibility issues.
- Provide an statement about the crime that the applicant was a victim of, explaining how the applicant has assisted the government and how the applicant has suffered as a result of the crime.
Our U Visa attorneys are highly qualified helping individuals obtain U Visa sand they can help you through this complex process.
What are the USCIS Filing Fees?
You will need to pay only the filing fees for the Form I-192 if it is necessary. Check the U.S. Immigration Service website for the form mentioned, as they change regularly:
What are the Fees of our Boston Immigration Lawyers to Petition for U Visa?
Where Can I Get More Information?