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Know the Laws:

UPDATED May 6, 2013

T-Visa Laws for Trafficking Victims

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The following information should not be considered as a legal opinion on specific facts or as a substitute for legal counsel.  Circumstances around human trafficking and applying for a T-visa are usually complicated and need a case-by-case analysis.  Please consult an attorney who understands the unique issues surrounding human trafficking BEFORE submitting anything to USCIS.  For more information about services for trafficked victims prior to obtaining T-visa status, you can contact the National Human Trafficking Resource Center's Hotline at 1-888-373-7888 or you can send a text to 233733, which corresponds with the letters BeFree on your phone.

Applying for a T-visa

back to topWhen I apply for a T-visa, can my immediate family members be included on my application?

Yes.  T-visa status is available for certain qualifying family members of a T-visa applicant – it’s called derivative T-visa status.  The following family members could qualify:

If you are under 21 years old, you can apply for T-visa status for your:

  • Spouse;
  • Unmarried children under 21 years of age;
  • Parents; and/or
  • Unmarried sisters or brothers under the age of 18.
If you are over 21 years old, you can apply for your:
  • Spouse; and/or
  • Unmarried children under the age of 21.
To apply for T-visa status for a family member, you must fill out and submit an “application for immediate family member of T-visa recipient,” known as a Form I-914 Supplement A.  A “T-visa recipient” means someone who has been granted a T-visa but you don’t have to wait until you get the T-visa to apply for your family members.  You may file the I-914, Supplement A at the same time that you file your application for a T-visa, or you can file it at a later time.

Employment authorization is not automatic for derivative T-visa status.  If you need employment authorization for your immediate family members, you will need to complete a Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization in addition to Form I-914 Supplement A.

Note: When a spouse obtains derivative T-visa status, it is sometimes called T-2 status.  When a child receives derivative T-visa status, it is sometimes called T-3 status.  When a parent receives T-visa status, it is sometimes called T-4 status.

* 8 C.F.R. § 214.11(o)

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back to topHow much does it cost to apply for a T-visa?

Here is a list of the possible forms that may need to be filed and the costs (if any) of each:

  • There is no application fee for Form I-914 or Form I-914 Supplements A or B. 
  • There is no biometric (fingerprint) fee .
  • There is a $380 fee for Form I-765, Employment Authorization Document (EAD) for each family member for whom you are seeking derivative T-visa status. This fee may be waived upon a showing of financial hardship.
  • There is a $585 fee for Form I-192 (to waive grounds of inadmissibility). The fee may be waived upon a showing of financial hardship.* 
Note: These costs are accurate as of May 2013. 

* USCIS website - Forms

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back to topDo I need a lawyer to apply for a T-visa?

It is very important that you work with an attorney (or initially with an advocate) familiar with T visas. The forms and laws are confusing and you may make a mistake or leave something out that results in USCIS denying your application.  Because applicants who are unlawfully present in the United States are subject to removal (deportation) if their applications are denied, we strongly encourage you to contact an immigration attorney before filing an application.  To find an immigration attorney, see our International/Immigration listings under National Organizations and / or our Finding a Lawyer page for a lawyer near you.

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