Humanitarian visas are available for people, particularly women, who are the victims of violence, in particular domestic violence. This particular kind of visa was designed to help abuse victims safely exit their dangerous, often violent, romantic relationship while being able to stay in the United States with their green card. There are some things to keep in mind when applying for this kind of visa, which is also known as a U Visa, or VAWA visa, and also a T visa.
Factors for a Humanitarian Visa
First, assuming the man abusing you is in a romantic relationship with you or assuming you’re married to him, the man must be a US citizen or be in the US legally. However, sometimes the abuser may have been deported because of their abuse or crimes, and if this is the case, you have to file the correct documents—known as the VAWA petition—prior to two years passing from when the abuser either got deported or lost his status as a US citizen.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the child or children of the abuser may also qualify under this visa. In addition, you have to have lived with the abuser at some point in time. Finally, you must also prove that your abuse occurred while you were married. Having some documentation to help prove abuse is always helpful. Documentation can include the following:
- Hospital records or doctor’s notes
- Police report
- Witness statement
The Abuse Doesn’t Have to be Just Physical Abuse
Many people assume the abuse they suffered from their husband has to be physical. This is not true. The abuse can also be emotional, verbal, and even economic abuse. In addition, your abuse doesn’t have to be physical only. If you have been emotionally or verbally abused, this will also allow you the potential to gain a U visa. The abuse does, however, have to have taken place while you were married.
Also note that you must prove that you have good moral character. In other words, if you have a long list of crimes and convictions on your record, it could impact your chances of getting this kind of visa.
There is a Limit on U Visas
Unfortunately, there are only so many U visas that are handed out each year. That number is currently 10,000, but like all things in immigration law, that number can increase or decrease depending on current laws. If you apply for this visa after 10,000 have been distributed already, you will be assigned to a waiting list. Fortunately, you will not be deported while your case is being reviewed.
T Visas Defined
A T visa is a different kind of visa. This is for people who have been the victim of human trafficking. There are a number of factors that you have to meet before you will qualify for this kind of visa. They are:
- You were brought into the US because you were kidnapped or forcibly taken into the US.
- You have to show being deported would cause you serious harm.
Getting a T visa is not easy. It can be a long, drawn-out process. It is best you hire an
experienced, dedicated lawyer to help.