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Immigration Assistance for Non-U.S. Citizen Victims

Immigration Assistance for Non-U.S. Citizen Victims

Many non-U.S. citizen victims do not have legal status in the United States, which is a reason victims may not come forward. Traffickers also use victims’ lack of legal status to exploit and control them. Immigration relief is a critical tool because it provides a way for victims to feel secure and stabilize their status in the United States.

DHS provides three types of immigration relief in order to encourage victims to come forward and work with law enforcement: Continued Presence (CP)T Visas, and U Visas.

CP is a form of short-term immigration relief that allows a potential witness to remain in the U.S. during an investigation.  CP should be made available as soon as law enforcement identifies a victim. The investigation does not have to be complete prior to requesting CP, which is requested by law enforcement only.

Law enforcement plays a role in the T visa and U visa processes by telling U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) about the victim’s assistance to law enforcement. Law enforcement fills out a declaration or certification, which informs USCIS about how the victim is assisting law enforcement. For the T visa, this is not required evidence; other evidence can be gathered to show the victim’s assistance. For the U visa, the law enforcement certification is required evidence. The law enforcement declaration or certification alone does not provide the basis for a grant of an immigration benefit and is only one piece of evidence that USCIS reviews before making a decision. To help a victim learn how to apply, contact USCIS at 1-800-375-5283, or go online to learn more about the T visa and U visa processes.

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