Law Offices of Christopher Chaney: Your U-Visa Lawyer
Contact a U visa lawyer from the Law Offices of Christopher Chaney if you need help submitting your U visa application in the U.S. Call us today.
As undocumented immigrants, you or your loved ones may be scared to report a crime to the authorities. You may be unwilling to draw unwanted attention to yourself. You may be afraid of deportation or suffering other criminal repercussions. That could be the case even if you have personally suffered from the original crime.
Did you know that you may qualify for a U-Visa? This particular type of visa grants temporary legal status and work authorization to immigrants.
A U-Visa can also lead to a green card after four years of continuous presence in the US. It can help you remain in the country legally.
However, applying for a U-Visa can take time and effort. It can be helpful to have a U-Visa immigration lawyer to guide you.
Do you need a U-Visa lawyer in Los Angeles? You can trust the Law Offices of Christopher Chaney for legal advice and representation. Our lawyers help victims secure their safety and future in the US.
What Is a U-Visa and How Does It Work?
The Violence Protection Act gave rise to U-Visa applications in 2000. Then, the visas were only meant to protect domestic abuse victims. The list of violent crimes has expanded, protecting immigrants from so much more.
The U-Visa provides a four-year temporary stay to immigrant crime victims. To qualify, they must have been harmed by criminal activity to be granted a visa. Moreover, they must report specific crimes to law enforcement and provide significant information to assist the authorities.
Ultimately, acquiring the visa means gaining non-immigrant status and employment authorization.
They receive the following rights with certain family members:
- They are allowed to open bank accounts
- They can get a driver’s license
- They get access to academic and vocational study
- They get work permits
How to Get a U-Visa
To be eligible for a U-Visa, you must be the victim of a qualifying crime and prove that you have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse as a result. Then, you have to share vital information with law enforcement agencies.
You may need to ask for a waiver of inadmissibility if you have some reasons why you cannot enter the U.S. These reasons may include the following:
You should show that giving you a waiver is good for the public or the country and is better than any negative factors.
You may need proof of your continuing cooperation with the police or the government while you have a U-visa. If you stop doing so, they may take away your U-visa or reject it.
In that case, a law enforcement certification of helpfulness from the police or the government may be required. If the case is closed or inactive, the authorities may be unwilling to give you one. You may need help from an experienced lawyer.
How Long Does It Take to Get a U-Visa?
Unfortunately, only 10,000 U-visas are given each year. This means there may be a long line and wait time for your petition. In fact, you may have to wait for many years before you get an answer on your case.
The average time for complete visa processing and approval is 12-18 months. However, the processing time may vary. It depends on the evidence submitted. If you wish to seek legal permanent residency after acquiring a U-Visa, you’ll have to wait until your third year to apply for a green card.
Are you looking for a U-Visa lawyer in Los Angeles? You can count on the Law Offices of Christopher Chaney to navigate the complex legal issues involved.
How Does a U-Visa Attorney Assist You in the Application Process?
Applying for a U-visa can be a complex and challenging process. The process is even more difficult for undocumented immigrants unfamiliar with the U.S. immigration system. However, working with experienced U-visa lawyers can help make the process smoother.
Here’s how attorneys can help their clients in the U-visa application process:
Assessing Your Eligibility
The first step in applying for a U-visa is determining whether you are eligible. An experienced U-visa attorney will check whether you meet the visa eligibility criteria. This often includes whether the crime you were a victim of qualifies you for a U-visa. Certain crimes for which victims can seek a U-visa status include:
- Domestic violence
- Sexual assault
- Human trafficking
- Obstruction of justice
- False imprisonment
- Physical harm
An attorney can help you gather the necessary evidence. To apply for a U visa, you must provide evidence that you have cooperated with law enforcement in the criminal investigation. The evidence may include police reports, medical records, and witness statements.
Preparing the Application
A U visa lawyer can help you prepare the application. The U visa application itself can be lengthy and complex. This is due to the many forms and supporting documents you must provide. The lawyer also needs to ensure the inclusion of all necessary information. Submission of the information in time is vital.
Representing You in Interviews and Hearings
After you file your U visa application, you may be required to attend an interview or hearing with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). An attorney can represent you at these interviews. This ensures that your rights are protected. You also have a better chance of success.
Providing Ongoing Support
Even after your U visa approval, there may be ongoing steps. You still need to maintain your status or apply for a green card. A U visa attorney can provide ongoing support and guidance throughout the process. Visa lawyers ensure your rights are maintained.
Contact the Law Offices of Christopher Chaney
Are you seeking an immigration lawyer to help you navigate the complex legal processes? Reach out to us at the Law Offices of Christopher Chaney. We have years of experience helping immigrants get their U visas. Contact us today and book a free consultation.