U Visas From My Car

U Visas are one way some crime victims have been able to obtain legal status in the United States. Andres Mejer, immigration attorney, explains all about what they are and who can apply for one. Andres explains, in-depth, what the six requirements are for those who think they may be eligible for a U visa.

Transcript:

Andres Mejer  Now I want to talk to you about education. So we talked about u visa fraud. Let me explain to you what u visa is now. 

Andres Mejer  It’s meant to help law enforcement to take criminals from the streets. Immigrants typically are afraid to talk to the police. That means they tend to not report crime for fear that they will be arrested. This law will protect you and give you legal status for you and for your family. Now there are six requirements one must be a victim of violent crime like assault sex abuse domestic violence. Two you have to have information about that crime. Three you need to be helpful in the investigation or the prosecution of the crime. That means generally you’ve got to talk to the police. And if you’re asked to go to court you need to go to court. For you have to have suffered. Severe emotional or physical fight harm. Five you need to be a good moral person. That typically means listen. If you murdered somebody. The fact that you helped them. With the help of the police within assault does not mean you’re a good moral person. So they’re going to look at you in totality the circumstances they can look at the good they’re going to look at the bad and then they’re going to decide do you deserve it? So you know if you have a significant criminal record well U visa may be your only option. But at the same token, you might not really be an option for you. So make sure you speak to a qualified immigration attorney before you file for anything. And the last requirement is a law enforcement certification from an agency that investigated the crime. 

Andres Mejer  So that could be the police the prosecutor or the judge depending on the circumstances. If. You. Talk to the police. You’re a victim of a crime let’s say it was assault. You know you went to get your check cashed out on a Friday you got attacked you called the police. The police found the people who attacked you. They charged him with the crime. You were asked to go to court. You went to get a court and they were found guilty or pled guilty. So the moment you have a decision by the judge. It’s now no longer your opinion that you are a victim of a crime. A judge determined you were a victim of a crime. Now. It wouldn’t get to the judge unless you had information. And it wouldn’t. And they’re not likely to get a conviction without your help. So the moment you have a conviction from a judge. You now have four of the six requirements already proven or at the very least three. 

Andres Mejer  It’s not always obvious that you suffered emotional physical harm sometimes you went to the hospital sometimes need to go to a psychologist every situation is different. Could more people. Well, you just look at your background what criminal charges have you had and what’s your benefit to society. But the point of it when you get a conviction. Because you spoke to the police because there was a conviction you also likely spoke to the prosecutor. So you automatically have three different agencies you could speak to the police prosecutor’s office and the judge if you reported a crime but the individual is never found. Not your fault or the individuals deported before the case was resolved. Again not your fault or you didn’t show up in court. Well. Now you can’t really talk to the prosecutor the judge because you never met them. You never spoke to them. 

Andres Mejer  You never appear before them and chances are there wasn’t a conviction. So all you have left is the police who may or may not help you. But if you were injured in a concussion. You know you were in the hospital for two weeks. And you did all that you could. Well, that’s a different story. Again it depends on its case by case. The benefits of a U visa is it you, your spouse and your children under 21 will get the status for four years after three years. You can apply for your Green Card five years later you can apply for your citizenship now. Yes, it is taking now four years for the U visa to get approved. That’s because the only issue ten thousand a year and there have been more than 20000 people applying each year for the past couple of years. But once you are. In processing. You generally are protected from deportation. U visa includes a waiver that forgives minor crimes orders of deportation and even illegal entry into the United States. It forgives even significant crimes. But again that goes to a good moral person. The worse your past conduct the more egregious. Your pain and suffering kind of needs to be in this context for the U visa. Because you’re going to balance the good and the bad, and then they’re going to make a decision as to whether you deserve to get it. If you have no criminal record and there’s a conviction. More often than not. You get approved.