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For members of the LGBTQ and victims of crime, immigration in Oak Brook is possible. Through numerous laws and a U-visa, people could petition USCIS for a chance to hold a nonimmigrant visa. However, this opportunity is limited and often requires the help of an experienced lawyer.

VAWA and LGBTQ Immigrants

VAWA is the Violence Against Women’s Act. This would include both male and female alleged victims if they are married to a U.S. citizen that has committed a crime against them. VAWA would include also any lawful permanent resident. The key is that victims need to have been married under the law to benefit from a VAWA application. There are some limitations for applying for a VAWA, for example, people would need to apply within two years of a divorce.


A U-visa is another type of nonimmigrant visa that allows an individual to obtain nonimmigrant status in the United States. It is particularly for alleged victims of certain crimes. Those crimes could include domestic violence and other violent crimes, such as abduction, abuse of sexual contact, false imprisonment, genital mutilation, kidnapping, felony assault, felonious assault, obstruction of justice, prostitution, rape, sexual assault, sexual exploitation, stalking, and torture.

A person would be eligible for this type of visa, regardless of whether it was a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident that caused that crime to be perpetrated on the immigrant. What is needed is that the immigrant reported the crime, helped law enforcement in the investigation of said crime, and the crime happened in the United States.

Proof Required for a U-Visa

To prove that people are alleged victims of a crime to qualify for a U-visa, an individual would need to show that they participated with law enforcement in the investigation of the crime. Generally, when lawyers file these types of petitions, they want to get a copy of the police report in the case if it was filed in courts. They want to get a copy of what happened in the case, as well. They may also include any pictures or hospital reports if the individual had to go to the hospital.

Unlawful Entries and Disqualifications

If someone entered the United States unlawfully, it does not preclude them from qualifying for a U-visa. A person could apply for a U-visa whether he or she entered lawfully or unlawfully into the United States as long as they meet the other requirements. However, an unlawful entry complicates the case in the sense that the individual needs to also file for an I-192 waiver of admissibility. That is why it is essential that an LGBTQ individual contact an immigration lawyer to help him or her assess a case and to assess whether he or she would need any type of waiver.

Law Enforcement and U-Visa Qualifications

The role that law enforcement plays in U visa qualifications is that the officer must certify that the individual was helpful in the investigation of the crime. That is done on Form I-918 Supplement B. Also, to apply for the U visa, victims must have a certification signed by a law enforcement individual or a court. The other aspect is that the case must be filed within six months of the signing.

Benefits of a Visa for LGBTQ People

The U -visa benefits for any individual, including LGBTQ individuals, is that it allows them to obtain nonimmigrant status for four years. That would allow them to remain in the United States and to be able to apply and obtain employment authorization as part of the visa. That individual would have a path to obtain legal permanent residency in which he or she would be self-petitioning themselves after he or she has had U-visa for three years.

Learn How a Lawyer Could Help LGBTQ Victims of Crime Immigrate to Oak Brook

Immigration for LGBTQ victims of crime in Oak Brook could be done through the use of a U-visa. These nonimmigrant visas allow for victims how have helped people who have assisted the police and been victimized by crime gain entry into the U.S. However, the process for applying is often complex. To better your odds of success, contact an attorney today.

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