Can I Qualify for a Green Card based on being the Victim of Domestic Violence?
Spouses, parents and children of U.S. citizens and permanent residents who have suffered physical, mental and/or sexual abuse by that relative may self-petition for an immigrant visa (green card) under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). If approved, the abuse victim is eligible to apply for permanent residency independent of his/her relationship to the abuser relative.
Various criteria determine an abuse victim’s eligibility depending on his/her relationship to the U.S. citizen or permanent resident relative. In order to apply for immigration benefits based on VAWA, an abuse victim must file Form I-360 along with evidence of his or her relationship to the abuser relative and evidence of the abusive relationship itself. This can be an emotionally difficult and document-intensive process, so it is advisable that the abuse victim seeks both legal and appropriate psychological support in order to better assist in assembling the visa petition. During processing, no communication or information about the petition will be sent to the abuser relative by the government. USCIS also maintains hotlines for both information about relief from domestic violence, as well as case status checks and anonymous questions for VAWA applicants.
For more information on how Surowitz Immigration, P.C can help you obtain a crime victim green card, call or contact us today.