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U NON-IMMIGRANT VISAS IN FLORIDA

 

U nonimmigrant status, commonly referred to as a U Visa, is a special type of visa that is given to victims of certain qualifying crimes who cooperate with law enforcement in the investigation and/or prosecution of criminal activity. Congress created the U Visa with the intent of strengthening law enforcement’s ability to investigate and prosecute serious crimes while encouraging non-citizen victims to cooperate with police and prosecutors without the fear of being removed (deported) from the United States.

The benefit of a U Visa is that it provides a non-citizen with legal status within the United States, provides them with employment authorization (a work permit), and provides them with a path to obtaining lawful permanent residence (green card) and potentially citizenship. A U Visa applicant may also seek derivative U visas on behalf of certain qualifying family members. A Florida based U Visa attorney like those at The Law Office of George K. Gomez can help explain all of the benefits that you and your family may be eligible for.

 

U VISA ELIGIBILITY

 

To be eligible for a U Visa, an applicant must establish that:

 

  • You are the victim of a qualifying crime;

  • You have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse as a result of having been a victim of criminal activity;

  • You have information about the criminal activity;

  • You were helpful, are helpful, or are likely to be helpful to law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of the crime;

  • The crime occurred in the United States or violated U.S. laws; and

  • You are admissible to the United States. (There is a waiver available if you are inadmissible.)

 

QUALIFYING CRIMES

 

If you were the victim of one or more of the following crimes, you may be eligible for a U Visa:

  • Abduction

  • Abusive Sexual Contact

  • Blackmail

  • Domestic Violence

  • Extortion

  • False Imprisonment

  • Female Genital Mutilation

  • Felonious Assault

  • Fraud in Foreign Labor Contracting

  • Hostage

  • Incest

  • Involuntary Servitude

  • Kidnapping

  • Manslaughter

  • Murder

  • Obstruction of Justice

  • Peonage

  • Perjury

  • Prostitution

  • Rape

  • Sexual Assault

  • Sexual Exploitation

  • Slave Trade

  • Stalking

  • Torture

  • Trafficking

  • Witness Tampering

  • Unlawful Criminal Restraint

  • Other Related Crimes (including attempt, conspiracy, or solicitation to commit any of the above and other related crimes)

THE BONA FIDE DETERMINATION PROCESS

 

It is important to note that, prior to the Sixth Circuit’s decision, USCIS recently announced a new “bona fide determination” (BFD) process whereby certain U petitioners and their family members with pending U petitions can receive four-year work authorization and deferred action while they wait for full adjudication. This new process is meant to combat the growing backlog of U Visa cases.

This new BFD process applies to all pending U Visa applications and all applications that are filed on or after June 14, 2021, for applicants who are living within the United States. USCIS has advised that they will review all pending U Visa applications for the BFD and that a person with a pending U Visa application does not need to do anything to undergo this review process.

 

Contact an Experienced U Visa Attorney Today!

 

An experienced U Visa attorney is one who is there to help non-citizens who have been the victims of serious crimes and who understands the physical and emotional trauma associated with reliving your crime, as well as the legal implications relevant to preparing your application (and waiver, if needed). At The Law Office of George K. Gomez, P.A, we are prepared to help our clients navigate this process, step by step, to ensure that they not only understand what is happening in their case but to ensure that their applications are approved.

 

An experienced U Visa attorney is important in the success of your U Visa case. The Law Office of George K. Gomez, P.A., is experienced in U Visa law and will fight hard to make your case as strong as possible. Call (305) 539-0991 or fill out the online contact form to schedule a free consultation with me. We are located in Miami Lakes, Florida and are available for consultations by phone, by zoom, or in person.

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What Our Clients Say

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Kayla G.

I have worked with Attorney Gomez on two separate cases and I can’t recommend him enough. He is always available by phone or email, takes his time to ensure I understand what is happening in my case, and goes above and beyond for his clients. I will definitely reach out to Attorney Gomez for my future legal needs and recommend him to anyone looking for an honest and trustworthy attorney.