What is the Difference Between a T-Visa and a U-Visa?

What is the Difference Between a T-Visa and a U-Visa?

The Victims of Trafficking and Violence Prevention Act of 2000 created T-Visas and U-Visas to fight human trafficking and protect victims of human trafficking as well as other crimes. To that end, T-Visas and U-Visas can allow immigrants who have become the victims of certain serious crimes to gain a legal status. There are different eligibility requirements that you must meet in order to qualify for a T-Visa or a U-Visa. In order to qualify for a T-Visa, you must meet the legal definition of a past or current victim of human trafficking. As result of trafficking, you must be present at a port of entry to the United States or in the United States (or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands or American Samoa). Essentially, you must be present in one of these locations only as a result of human trafficking. It does not matter if you were tricked, kidnapped, or coerced into traveling to the U.S. for the purposes of human trafficking – human trafficking simply has to be the reason for your current location. You also must cooperate with the human trafficking investigation and/or prosecution to the extent reasonably possible. Finally, you must be legally admissible (or eligible for a waiver) to the U.S. in order to qualify for a T-Visa. In other words, there must be no legal bar to keep you from entering the U.S. By contrast, under a U-Visa, you may have entered the U.S. for another, unrelated reason, and then become a victim of human trafficking. A U-Visa, however, goes beyond human trafficking to include any immigrant who has become the victim of a specific serious crime while in the U.S., or a crime that violates U.S. law. Some examples of these serious crimes include abduction, felonious assault, manslaughter, sexual assault, prostitution, torture, and trafficking. As a result of your victimization during this criminal act, you must have suffered serious physical or mental abuse. You must possess information about the crime and share it with law enforcement officials. Additionally, you must have helped, be helping, or will help law enforcement authorities with the investigation and/or prosecution of the crime. Finally, you generally must be admissible to the U.S.; otherwise, you must obtain a waiver that allows a non-immigrant to enter the U.S. Landerholm Immigration, A.P.C. is an Oakland immigration law firm who has dedicated their practice to protecting the interests of immigrants who are seeking to remain in the U.S. and facing potential deportation. We are prepared to build the strongest case possible in order to defend you against deportation. Contact us today to set up your free evaluation and discover what assistance we can offer to you and your family.
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