U-Visas Lawyer in Phoenix
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Unfortunately, domestic violence, human trafficking, and sexual assault crimes still run rampant across the globe. However, in 2000, the United States passed the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act in conjunction with the establishment of the U-Visa to give aid to immigrants who are victims of serious crimes. Securing a visa can be a complicated, time-consuming process. A mistake on a visa application can not only slow the entire process down but can also result in you getting denied the visa you deserve. At Diamondback Legal, we know how stressful the visa application process is. We can help relieve some of the burdens and help you through the process from start to finish. When you hire one of our U-Visas attorneys in Phoenix, you can be sure your needs are always being put first.
Eligibility for U-Visas
The law states that for an individual to be considered for a U-Visa, he or she must have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse as a result of being a victim of a serious crime.
Examples of qualifying crimes include:
- Domestic violence
- False imprisonment
- Aggravated assault
- Sexual exploitation
- Slave trade
- Unlawful criminal restraint
Other conditions for eligibility require that the individual must have information regarding the criminal activity they fell victim to and must be willing to share this information with law enforcement to assist with the investigation or prosecution.
The Application Process
A large part of the U-Visa application requires an individual to include detailed information as to how he or she can provide government officials with important information regarding the criminal activity. At Diamondback Legal, our Phoenix immigration attorneys know how difficult it can be to relive some of the most harrowing experiences you have had to face. We offer complete moral and emotional support for you during this time.
After this information has been documented on the application, the law enforcement agency you are working with must certify that you are, indeed, aiding them with their investigation and you are a victim of a crime.
The Duration of U-Visas
Generally, U-Visas last for a maximum of four years. However, there are circumstances in which an individual may be granted an extension if he or she must stay in the United States due to the continuing nature of the criminal investigation or prosecution.
If you were a victim of trafficking or violence, you will be permitted to change your immigration status to permanent resident after three continuous years of assisting law enforcement while present in the United States.
Can Family Members Get U-Visas Too?
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) limits the number of U-Visas granted to 10,000 annually. If the limit has been reached, an individual may be put on a waiting list and granted deferred action or parole. However, this does not include family members who would be affected by an individual’s removal.
U-Visas can be extended to family members under the following circumstances:
- A spouse of the applicant can qualify for a derivative U-Visa if the applicant is 21 years old or older
- Children of the applicant can qualify for derivative U-Visas if the applicant is 21 years old or older
- Parents of the applicant can qualify for derivative U-Visas if the applicant is 21 years old or older
- Any unmarried siblings who are younger than 18 can qualify for derivative U-Visas if the applicant is younger than 21 years old
We Are Dedicated to Helping People
At Diamondback Legal, we are aggressive-yet-compassionate advocates for all of our clients. We take a detail-oriented approach to every case, and we are always there for you when you have questions. In addition to free case evaluations, our Phoenix U-Visas attorneys are always available, even after hours and on weekends. Our law firm is also bilingual; we are fluent in both English and Hebrew. When you need someone on your side, Diamondback Legal is there for you.
Do you need help securing an immigration visa? Call our Phoenix U-Visa lawyer today at 602-726-2045.
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- Mary Ellington