Are You Trapped In An Abusive Marriage While The Green Card Is Pending?
To qualify for VAWA protection, the foreign national must be the spouse or child of an abusive U.S. Citizen or lawful permanent resident and be eligible for a family-based or immediate relative immigrant classification. Notably, a foreign national can qualify for VAWA benefits even if their abuser's U.S. Citizenship or lawful permanent resident status has subsequently been revoked. However, the abuser must have been a U.S. Citizen or lawful permanent resident at some point during the abusive relationship. The general requirements for self-petitioning under VAWA include:
o Entering into the marriage with the U.S. Citizen or lawful permanent resident in good faith;
o Having been battered or subject to extreme cruelty perpetrated by the U.S. Citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse or parent;
o Being a person of good moral character; and
o Experiencing extreme hardship if removed or deported.
To corroborate that the marriage was entered in good faith and that the foreign n
Definition Of Abuse
The USCIS extends VAWA benefits to spouses and/or children who have been battered or subject to extreme cruelty perpetrated by their U.S. Citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse or parent. By statutory definition, battery or extreme cruelty encompasses being the victim of any act or threatened act of violence, including any forceful detention, which results or threatens to result in physical or mental injury. Additionally, psychological or sexual abuse or exploitation, including rape, molestation, incest (if the victim is a minor), or forced prostitution shall be considered acts of violence. Moreover, other abusive actions may also be acts of violence under certain circumstances, including acts that, in and of themselves, may not initially appear violent but that are a part of an overall pattern of violence.