The U nonimmigrant status (also known as the “U visa”) is for victims of certain crimes. Congress created the U visa so that undocumented immigrants would report crimes committed against them without fear of being deported.
Although U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is the agency that handles U visa applications, the process starts at the law enforcement level. This is usually the police, but the following authorities can also help:
- Any federal, state, tribal, territorial, or local law enforcement office or agency, prosecutor, judge, or other authority that has responsibility to detect, investigate, or prosecute the qualifying criminal activity, or convict or sentence the perpetrator.
- Agencies with criminal investigative jurisdiction, such as child and adult protective services, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and federal and state Departments of Labor.
To qualify for the U visa, the victim must provide evidence to USCIS, among other things, establishing that he or she is assisting, has assisted, or will assist law enforcement if assistance is reasonably requested.
If you have been a victim of any crimes listed below, contact our office to start the process of possibly receiving U visa status: