The Violence Against Women Act provides countless protections for residents of the United States. Commonly referred to as VAWA, this federal law also provides options for immigrants who are victims of domestic violence to complete the visa application process on their own.
Often, immigrants who experience domestic abuse and control are at the mercy of their abuser. This happens specifically in cases where sponsorship by the abuser is necessary for the immigration process to move forward. Fortunately, hope is here. A dedicated immigration attorney could help you navigate VAWA application forms in Cicero and find a safe haven.
You can self-petition if you are:
For dedicated assistance filling out VAWA application forms, reach out to our Cicero attorneys.
You can qualify for VAWA if you can prove that you have been battered or you have been subject to extreme cruelty. Abuse and extreme cruelty take many forms. Below are some common scenarios that may qualify you for VAWA. Contact our Cicero legal team if you can answer yes to any of these scenarios, and we could help you complete the necessary VAWA application forms to break free.
In Cicero and beyond, applying for resident status through VAWA involves completing numerous forms and submitting various documents. To initiate the process, immigrants must first prepare a cover letter outlining their reasons and qualifications for seeking protection under VAWA. Along with this cover letter, they must also include a document known as Form I-360.
Form I-360, also referred to as a petition for special immigrants, is what jumpstarts the process. While most immigration documents require an applicant to provide their home address, there are protections in place that allow someone fleeing from abuse to maintain confidentiality and use their attorney’s address instead of their own.
While Form I-360 is the only formal document required under the law, applicants should expect to provide additional information during this process, including documentation that establishes residency in the U.S. or demonstrates a history of abuse.
Once VAWA protections have been awarded, an applicant has the opportunity to earn a green card and become a lawful permanent resident of the United States. This is achieved through a process known as adjustment of status.
Adjustment of status requires additional paperwork, primarily Form I-485. An applicant must wait until their I-360 application is approved before moving forward with this step.
This process can take a while. However, there are some limited circumstances where it is possible to file both forms at the same time and avoid some of the delays. One of the benefits of hiring legal counsel is that our team could assist with moving the Cicero VAWA application process forward without avoidable delays.
It is not enough to file the right forms and complete the right paperwork. Before the federal government will award VAWA status, the person applying must also undergo a background check.
The background check will investigate a number of things, starting with whether the applicant is inadmissible according to the law. This could be the case for anyone with certain criminal convictions or a history of violating immigration laws. The background check will also seek to confirm the moral character of the applicant.
In addition to the aforementioned Cicero VAWA application forms like I-485 and I-360, more information may be needed by the federal government to reach a final decision. In these cases, requests for additional documentation should be complied with as soon as possible.
If you believe you are entitled to the protection of VAWA, it is vital that you get all your documentation in order. Approval of your application could provide you with a path to citizenship and an opportunity to avoid future abuse. Call today to discuss VAWA application forms in Cicero.