VAWA Attorney in San Jose Helping Victims of Domestic Violence Safely Pursue Legal Status
One in three women has experienced violence at the hands of a spouse or partner in America. Many of these women are immigrants trapped in abusive relationships with no financial means or resources to get out. Immigrant women often rely on their marital status for too long—and often at the expense of their or their family’s safety—to keep their legal status.
The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) gives victims of abuse—spouses, children, and parents of U.S. citizens 21 years or older—a second chance and an opportunity to stay in the United States free of violence. A VAWA self-petition allows victims to file for citizenship on their own and without the help of their spouse.
We help victims regain their lives and pursue legal status independent of their abusive spouses.
What is a VAWA Self-Petition?
The VAWA allows victims of domestic violence to self-petition for legal status without the help of their spouse. Spouses, children, and parents who have suffered abuse from a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident (LPR) can file a VAWA self-petition if they have lived in the United States for at least three years.
A VAWA self-petition requires extensive evidence of physical or mental violence, stalking, sexual assault, and other forms of violence to be successful. Our attorney gathers information on your behalf to issue a credible personal statement and account of your experience to support your claims.
VAWA cases take nearly 16 to 21 months to resolve. Our attorney will guide you through the process and protect you from further harm and deportation.
How Do I Prove Abuse?
Domestic violence is a severe criminal offense. Victims of abuse seeking self-petition must offer valid documentation and proof that they were subjected to extreme cruelty and abuse. Accusations are not enough for the court to make a fair judgment.
To substantiate your abuse claim, it will help our attorney to have the following in hand:
- A personal account of your marriage, including any documentation regarding violent incidences
- Photographs of any injuries
- Medical records
- Police reports
- Letters from a therapist, counselor, or mental health provider
We play an essential role in gathering necessary evidence regarding abuse, helping you prepare a personal statement, and filing a VAWA self-petition to obtain a green card without the help of your spouse.
What is a U Visa?
A U Visa is a temporary visa for domestic violence or mental abuse victims. A U Visa encourages abuse victims to help law enforcement investigate and prosecute criminal activity, such as stalking, sexual assault, and other felony crimes, without the fear of deportation.
During an ongoing investigation, individuals are issued temporary immigration status, including work authorization. Temporary immigration status covers qualifying family members such as children or parents, and it affords a person possible lawful permanent resident (LPR) status.
Individuals with authorized immigrant status are eligible to apply for U Visa if they are victims of abuse and have knowledge about their abusers that they can share with law enforcement. We understand how delicate this situation is, and we will ensure you have the legal support and counsel you need.
Can a VAWA Lawyer Help with a Self-Petition?
The goal of any immigration proceeding is to present the most robust possible case. Our attorney knows that we must present valuable evidence to influence the court’s final decision, including proof that you have been subjected to extreme cruelty or abuse at the hands of your spouse. We will use tangible things like police reports, journal entries, witnesses, and medical records.
It can take 16 to 21 months to process a petition, and there are many steps we must take on your behalf, including filing appropriate forms and paperwork to get a petition moving.
Our diligent efforts in gathering evidence and proving abuse will help your chances of being approved so you and your family can move on with your lives. When you need a voice against abuse, contact Sadri Law, PC, to take necessary action. Contact our firm today for legal counsel: 408-402-4967.