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Violence against Women Act (VAWA)

VAWA

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As a battered spouse, child or parent, you may file an immigrant visa petition under the Violence against Women Act (VAWA). VAWA allows certain spouses, children and parents of U.S. citizens and permanent residents (green card holders) to file a petition for themselves without the abuser's knowledge. This will allow you to seek both safety and independence from the abuser. The provisions of VAWA apply equally to women and men. Your abuser will not be notified that you have filed for immigration benefits under VAWA.


Help is also available from the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or 1-800-787-3224 (TDD). The hotline has information about shelters, mental heath care, legal advice and other types of assistance, including information about filing for immigration status. For more information, visit the National Domestic Violence website.

 

Eligibility Requirements for a Spouse

  • You are:
    • married to a U.S. citizen or permanent resident abuser

or

    • your marriage to the abuser was terminated by death or a divorce (related to the abuse) within the 2 years prior to filing, or
    • your spouse lost or renounced citizenship or permanent resident status within the 2 years prior to filing due to an incident of domestic violence, or
    • you believed that you were legally married to your abusive U.S. citizen or permanent resident spouse but the marriage was not legitimate solely because of the bigamy of your abusive spouse.
  • You:
    • have been abused in the United States by your U.S. citizen or permanent resident spouse, or
    • have been abused by your U.S. citizen or permanent resident spouse abroad while your spouse was employed by the U.S. government or a member of the U.S. uniformed services, or
    • are the parent of a child who has been subjected to abuse by your U.S. citizen or permanent spouse.
  • You entered into the marriage in good faith, not solely for immigration benefits.
  • You have resided with your spouse.
  • You are a person of good moral character.

 

Eligibility Requirements for a Child

  • You:
    • are the child of a U.S. citizen or permanent resident abuser
    • were the child of a U.S. citizen or permanent resident abuser who lost citizenship or lawful permanent resident status due to an incident of domestic violence
    • have been abused in the United States by your U.S. citizen or permanent resident parent
    • have been abused by your U.S. citizen or permanent resident parent abroad while your parent was employed by the U.S. government or a member of the U.S. uniformed services
    • have resided with the abusive parent
    • have evidence to prove your relationship to your parent
    • must provide evidence of good moral character if you are over the age of 14

 

Eligibility Requirements for a Parent


  • You are the parent of a U.S. citizen son or daughter or were the parent of a U.S. citizen son or daughter who lost or renounced citizenship status related to an incident of domestic violence or died within 2 years prior to filing
  • You have been abused by your U.S. citizen son or daughter
  • You have resided with the abusive son or daughter
  • You are a person of good moral character

 

Back to Immigration Law


 
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IMMIGRATION LAW

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At the Law Offices of Louis Edward Valencia II, LLC, we offer a wide range of representation to immigration law of all types.

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