What are the requirements for a U visa?

Being a victim of a crime can be an emotional time. Victims need time to recover from the trauma the have suffered from. This trauma can involve physical pain as well since they may have suffered injuries from the incident. When victims are involved in a crime, it can be helpful for them to come forward to police and law enforcement. By doing so, they can explain more about the offender and help police get a better understanding on the situation. Eventually, this may be able to help police arrest the offender who did this and have them prosecuted. This can prove to be a healing experience for the victim emotionally.

When individuals without permanent residency status in the United States are involved in a crime, they may have to apply for a visa to stay in the country to help with the investigation. U visas are reserved for individuals that have been a victim of a crime. To be eligible for this visa, individuals must be a victim of a qualifying crime and be able to assist law enforcement during the investigation of the crime. If they have suffered mental or physical abuse during the incident, this may give them more reason to stay in the country. By helping with the investigation, they can give themselves time to heal physically and work toward healing mentally and emotionally. For the crime to qualify, it must have been committed in the U.S. and broken our country’s laws. These crimes can include domestic violence, kidnapping, manslaughter, murder, prostitution, rape, sexual assault and human trafficking. Due to the severity of these crimes, these victims are needed to provide evidence in order to prosecute the criminals to create a safer environment.

U visa applicants are able to stay in the country because of their willingness to cooperate with law enforcement officials to prosecute criminals that have harmed the community and may be able to cause more harm. During this time period, victims are needed in the country to testify and attend court sessions on the matter. With the U visa in their possession, it may be able to  set them up to be granted permanent resident status in the United States later on. After three years of continuous presence in the country, U visa holders are able to apply for permanent resident status. There is a limit to the number of U visas per year. However, there is not limit for family members, which includes spouses, children and possibly other family members.

John Sesini is an experienced immigration attorney with offices in Green Bay and Milwaukee Wisconsin. If you have any questions regarding immigration law matters, please contact the Sesini Law Group, S.C. and schedule your initial consultation with our firm today

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