Maryland U Visa Lawyer

Normally, a person wishes to enter the United States for their own personal benefit. They want to be reunited with family, to obtain better work opportunities, or even wish to escape violence or persecution.

However, in certain circumstances, the U.S. government may wish for a person to be granted entry or be given permission to remain in the country. If you have been the victim of a crime and are willing to assist law enforcement with the prosecution of the parties responsible, you may be eligible for a U visa to enter or remain in the United States.

A Maryland U visa immigration lawyer could help you if you are willing to assist in a law enforcement investigation. An experienced visa attorney could help to explain the purpose of the U visa, determine whether you qualify, and to take steps to initiate the U visa process.

The Concept of a U Visa

The United States retains the power to remove (deport) any non-citizen or unauthorized visitor. Typically, visitors to the United States must obtain a visa to enter the country. A visa usually serves the motivations of the holder. For example, a person may seek a visa for tourism, to work, or even to study. However, occasionally the government will have a direct interest in keeping a person in the country.

A non-citizen or non-legal resident may apply for a U visa if they are the victim of a criminal act. According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, USCIS, these criminal acts can include:

  • Abduction
  • Rape
  • Felonious assault
  • Torture
  • Human trafficking

The purpose of a U visa is to keep a potential witness in the country to be able to help in the investigation of the crime. It is important to remember that this is not an immigrant visa and holders of U visas must return to their home countries upon expiration of the visa. However, before the expiration of the U visa and after being in U visa status for three (3) years, a U visa holder may be eligible to apply for lawful permanent resident status (Green Card). A Maryland U visa lawyer can help individuals to better understand the purpose of U visas and how they may apply to one’s current situation.

How to Obtain a U Visa

As with most other visa programs, applicants for U visas must follow a strict procedure. This begins with the applicant completing and submitting Form I-918. This form requires detailed information about an applicant’s current living situation, how they came to enter the country, information about their family, and whether they have any criminal record. A Maryland U visa lawyer can help clients to accurately and promptly complete this application.

In addition, an application must include a certification completed by the relevant law enforcement agency that is investigating the incident. This form must indicate the nature of the criminal activity, how the applicant is connected, and a sworn statement that the applicant is currently or will in the future provide aid to law enforcement to bring the criminal to justice.

Finally, an application must include a personal statement concerning the criminal activity at issue. A U visa lawyer in Maryland can help contact law enforcement to obtain their certification and work with clients to draft effective personal statements.

A Maryland U Visa Attorney Could Help Victims of Crimes Remain in the U.S.

People who are the victims of crimes have the right to see their attackers brought to justice. When the victim is a non-citizen of the United States, the government may allow them to remain in the country in order to aid law enforcement or to testify against their attackers. To accomplish this, a person may apply for a U visa.

A Maryland U visa lawyer could help you to gather the information necessary to complete a U visa application. They can then assist you to complete the application, to gather the certification needed from law enforcement, and to author a personal statement needed to complete the U visa application. Contact an immigration attorney today to help bring criminals to justice while protecting your right to stay in the United States.

Maryland Visa Lawyer