Atlanta U-Visa Attorney Making a Difference for You
In 2000, Congress passed the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act (including the Battered Immigrant Women’s Protection Act). This created the U nonimmigrant visa, which is a visa for immigrants to the United States who have been victims of crimes and whom law enforcement has been deemed to be possibly helpful in the investigation and prosecution of crimes.
This law is intended to help law enforcement agencies increase their ability to investigate and prosecute crimes of sexual assault, domestic violence, and trafficking of noncitizen foreign nationals, as well as to help the victims of these crimes. Determining whether you are eligible for a nonimmigrant U-Visa to enter or remain in the United States can be a complicated and confusing process.
An accomplished U-Visa lawyer from Sessoms Law Office, LLC can guide you through your application process and make a positive difference as you enter into the process of applying for a U-Visa. Call our Atlanta office today at 678-853-7402.
Who is Eligible for a U-Visa?
To be eligible for a nonimmigrant U-Visa, you must have been the victim of qualifying criminal activity that caused you significant mental and/or physical harm, and you must have information about criminal activity that law enforcement may find useful in investigation or prosecution. You must also be admissible to the United States, or have obtained a waiver by applying for advance permission to enter as a nonimmigrant.
The list of qualifying crimes is long, and includes such things as murder, rape, incest, kidnapping, sexual exploitation, stalking, and domestic violence, among others. The criminal activity in question must have happened in the U.S. or broken U.S. laws. The attempt, conspiracy, or solicitation to commit a qualifying crime or crimes also qualifies.
What Documentation Must I Provide to Apply for a U-Visa?
To apply for a U-Visa, you will have to provide the required petition for U nonimmigrant status, a personal statement detailing the criminal activity of which you were a victim, and proof that you meet all other admissibility criteria or have received a waiver. Additionally, you will need certification from a law enforcement agency that you have information that they will find helpful in investigation or prosecution, and that you have been or will be cooperative in sharing that information. It is not necessary for the perpetrator of the crime against you to be found guilty.
What if I Have Trouble Getting Law Enforcement Certification?
It can sometimes be difficult to get the law enforcement certification you need to qualify for a nonimmigrant U-Visa. In some locations, law enforcement agencies have policies that can get in the way of getting the signatures you need for your U-Visa application. Having a skilled immigration lawyer on your side to help you in dealing with these law enforcement agencies could possibly make the difference between success or failure in your U visa application.
You have already suffered as a victim of criminal activity. Let a skilled and knowledgeable U-Visa lawyer walk side-by-side with you through the application process, helping you deal with any complications or difficulties that might arise. Call Sessoms Law Group, LLC today at 678-853-7402 to get in touch with a U-Visa lawyer who stands ready to help.
Can My Family Join Me in the U.S. if I Get a U-Visa?
Once you succeed in obtaining your nonimmigrant U-Visa to enter or remain in the United States, you may petition for certain family members to join you if you and they meet eligibility requirements. If you, the primary U-Visa applicant, are under 21 years of age, you may petition on behalf of your spouse, children, parents, and unmarried siblings under age 18. If you are over the age of 21, you may petition on behalf of your spouse and children. Your family members do not have to be victims of criminal activity, nor do they need a law enforcement certification. You must be able to prove that they are truly your allowable relative, and that they meet the general admissibility rules of the United States or have a waiver. The assistance of a skilled immigration lawyer can be crucial in both your own and your family’s success in gaining U visa status in the United States. Call Sessoms Law Group today.