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September 06, 2011

FAQ: Who can certify the U visa case of a victim of domestic violence?

Many of our potential clients do not know that domestic violence is a U visa-qualifying crime. Nevertheless, the majority of our U visa cases are women (and men) who have been victims of the abuse of a significant other. The first step in applying for a U visa is getting the I-918 Supplement B Certification Form completed by a law enforcement official, so obviously, our first question to victims of domestic violence is: “Did you ever report the crime to the police?” If the answer is yes, then the victim may apply for a U visa.
The first step we take is to ask the police officer who filled out the police report to sign the certification. For many of our clients, the police officers are happy to oblige and help them with the U visa application. One of our more recent clients, a man whose girlfriend hit him and scratched him, reported this abuse to the local police, and the reporting officer happily certified his case.
However, sometimes police officers deny victims of domestic violence the necessary certification, or a police officer was not involved in the case at all. In this instance, if the victim took the case to court, we can ask the judge who handled the case or the District Attorney to sign the certification form. This was the case for another client, the victim of domestic violence with orders of protection against her estranged husband, who was granted certification by the District Attorney when he violated those orders. Although the police were not specifically involved in her case, she still qualified as a victim, so her case went forward.
All in all, victims of domestic violence have many options to obtain certification, as long as the violence was reported. There is no harm in applying for a U visa, so if a victim fits into these specific regulations for domestic violence, she or he should call us today for help with applying for a U visa!

Emily Hogan
Special Case Manager

Posted by VisaLawyer at September 6, 2011 02:39 PM

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