What is VAWA?
A VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) Petition is available for a person (man or woman) who has been a victim of domestic violence committed in the United States by a US citizen or US legal resident who is their spouse, child or parent.
For more information about VAWA please see the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services website.
What are the benefits VAWA?
VAWA allows the recipient to:
- Apply for an Employment Authorization Card and a Social Security Number
- Legally work in the United States without fear of deportation
- Include certain family members in the application including those outside the US
- In some cases apply for permanent residency in the US
What documents do I need for a VAWA consultation?
If you believe you can apply for VAWA, you should bring:
- Information or proof of the legal status of the abusive US resident or US citizen
- Proof of marriage or relationship to the abusive US resident or US citizen
- Evidence of the domestic violence
What is a U Visa?
A U Visa is available for a person who has been the victim of certain serious crimes in the US (including domestic violence) and who cooperates with law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of the crime. There are some U Visas available for those who have been victims of serious violations of labor laws in the workplace. A criminal investigation of the crime is required, which can be from the Police, Sheriff, Prosecutor’s office, the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), or any other agency that has authorization to investigate these crimes.
For a list of qualifying crimes and more information about the U Visa, please visit the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services website.
What are the benefits of a U Visa?
The U Visa allows the recipient to:
• Obtain nonimmigrant legal status in the United States
• Apply for an Employment Authorization Card and Social Security number
• Legally work in the United States without fear of deportation
• Include certain family members in the application including those outside the US
• Become eligible for permanent residency in the US
What documents do I need for a U Visa consultation?
If you believe you can apply for a U Visa, you should bring a copy of the complete report of the crime from the appropriate law enforcement agency or Department of Children and Family Services. If you don’t have a copy of the report, CARECEN can assist you in obtaining a copy.
To schedule an appointment for a VAWA or U Visa consultation, please call (213) 385-7800 x140 or come in during our walk-in hours on Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The consultation fee is $50.