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What Is The U Visa?

What is the U visa?

This type of visa is available to people who have been victims of serious crimes either within the United States or outside in peripheral territories or in certain cases on military bases.

It is important to identify the crimes that qualify, since not everyone qualifies to apply for this type of visa.

  • Assault, which includes felonies such as stabbing, shooting a person, trespassing into a home with people inside, and armed robbery.
  • Blackmail
  • Extortion
  • Incest
  • Homicide and murder
  • Manipulation of a jury
  • Genital mutilation
  • Obstruction of justice
  • Perjury, that is, when a witness lies in court
  • Prostitution or any other form of sexual exploitation that is forced
  • Kidnapping, holding a person illegally or in a situation of slavery
  • Human trafficking, that is, the illegal trafficking of a human being in order to exploit him sexually, labor, to extract an organ, etc.
  • Forcing people to work on something they don’t want to do or to pay off a debt
  • Torture
  • Domestic violence, both in the cases of marriages and couples, of the same sex or opposite sex. Includes beatings (beatings) and serious verbal harassment
  • Rape and any abuse or unwanted sexual contact or sexual assault


Disadvantages: .

o This type of visa application is extremely lengthy. At the moment there are long processing delays for around 12 years

o Not being able to travel abroad while it is in process or even until obtaining residency

o Possible denial of the case with risk of deportation if unable to evidence abuse was actually perpetuated


o Work permit

o Deferred Action Status: allows you to stay in the country while the visa is processed

o Depending on the age, a victim could include as derivatives certain members of his/her family, such as spouse, children, or parents.

o Provides a pathway to residency

Note that some of the criteria may fall under a different relief category depending on the details and circumstances, therefore it is important to consult with an experienced attorney to obtain the best advice possible on any given situation.

Carlos Sandoval

Carlos Enrique Sandoval, Attorney, member of the FL Bar, AILA and licensed to practice law by the Supreme Court and the Federal Court for the Southern District of Florida.

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