Legal Information

If V was deported, can she still apply for VAWA or U visa?

If V was deported, can she still apply for VAWA or U visa?

Although we do not have this specific information on our website, I reached out to an immigration attorney at a national organization called ASISTA to ask for some general information about this topic. Here is the basic information that she told me but it is very important to consult with a knowledgeable immigration attorney before applying for any immigration remedy to understand how this basic information may or may not apply to you.

A prior removal order doesn't mean that a person cannot apply for VAWA or a U visa - however, when applying for the VAWA self-petition, the prior removal order could become a barrier from applying for a green card (depending on the other circumstances in the petitioner's individual case) and could cause serious problems. For example, if the petitioner left the U.S and re-entered after having a removal (deportation) order, that may trigger something called the permanent bar. There may be waivers available, but it is essential that you speak with a lawyer who is knowledgeable about VAWA self-petitions about your immigration history to figure out whether you are eligible for these waivers.

In terms of applying for a U visa, a person can apply for a U visa, even with a prior removal (deportation) order. The deportation will still have to be dealt with eventually, and of course, the issue will need to be addressed in the application and other relevant forms filed with the U visa. Generally, USCIS (US Citizenship and Immigration Service) can grant an adjustment of status (a green card) for a person with an old removal order, but the removal order will still need to be resolved with the Immigration Court before the person can travel outside the United States or eventually become a citizen. Again, you should consult with a knowledgeable immigration attorney who can help you with this process.