The U-Visa was designed to encourage these very immigrants to cooperate with law enforcement in reporting, and eventually prosecuting criminal activity. The application should be prepared with affidavits, any required accompanying forms, the entire application must be certified by law enforcement, a prosecutor, or a judge. Without this certification, the case cannot move forward. Once the application is certified, the client pays a $465 money order made out to the U.S. government, and the packet is sent to USCIS.
If you are a victim of a qualifying crime (see below) and assisted law enforcement in this criminal case, then you may be eligible for the U-Visa. If approved, you would be able to legally work and you would be eligible to receive lawful permanent resident status after three years.
As taken from the USCIS website, There are four statutory eligibility requirements. The individual must:
The individual must have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse as a result of having been a victim of a qualifying criminal activity.
The individual must have information concerning that criminal activity.
The individual must have been helpful, is being helpful, or is likely to be helpful in the investigation or prosecution of the crime.
The criminal activity violated U.S. laws
The criminal activity which are considered “qualifying crimes” for a U-Visa are:
Abusive Sexual Contact
Genital Female Mutilation
Obstruction of Justice
Unlawful Criminal Restraint
Other Related Crimes