What other requirements related to the abuse must I prove?
A few other requirements related to the abuse that you must meet are:
- If the abuser is/was your spouse, at least some of the abuse to you or your children must have happened while you were married.1Note: It is OK if some of the abuse took place before you were married, as long as there is a pattern of abuse that continued during your marriage.
- If you do not currently live in the United States, at least some of the abuse must have taken place in the US. Note: If you were only abused abroad, then you must show that your abusive spouse, parent, or child was an employee of the US government or a member of the US the military at the time.2
- If you currently live in the United States, then it does not matter where the abuse occurred.
- You must have lived with the abuser in the same home at some point.3Note: If you only lived together before you came to the US, you should still be able to file a VAWA self-petition but it’s important to work with a knowledgeable lawyer you because this is one of the reasons that USCIS could deny your case.
1 INA § 204(a)(1)(A)(iii)(I)(bb), (a)(1)(B)(ii)(I)(bb); 8 CFR § 204.2(c)(1)(vi)
2 INA § 204(a)(1)(A)(v), (a)(1)(B)(iv); See also USCIS Policy Memorandum, “Eligibility to Self-Petition as a Battered or Abused Parent of a U.S. Citizen; Revisions to Adjudicator’s Field Manual (AFM) Chapter 21.15 (AFM Update AD 06-32),” PM-602-0046, August 30, 2011.
3 INA § 204(a)(1)(A)(iii)(II)(dd), (a)(1)(B)(ii)(II)(dd)