S Visa Overview
The following guide is intended as a general overview of the types of special immigrant status visas, including S Visas for Witnesses and Informants.
GenerallyThe S classification is for persons who are able to help United States law enforcement personnel by proving information about criminal or terrorist activities. Qualifying family members of the principal S nonimmigrant may also be eligible to apply for a green card.
EligibilityTo be eligible for an S visa, a person must:
A person must be in possession of critical and reliable information about a criminal organization or enterprise;
A person must be willing to supply, or has supplied, the information to federal or state authorities or court; and
The Attorney General must determine that the person's presence in the United States is essential to the success of an authorized criminal investigation or prosecution.
Application ProcessStep 1 - File Form I-854, Interagency Alien Witness and Informant Record. This form is to be completed by the federal or state law enforcement agency or U.S. Attorney's Office that initially filed for the S nonimmigrant status on behalf of the individual.
Step 2 - File Form I-485 after Form I-854 has been approved. The following information should be submitted along with your Form I-485:
You should submit the following evidence with your Form I-485:
Two passport-style photos
Form G-325A, Biographic Information, if you are between 14 and 79 years of age
Copy of birth certificate
Form I-693, Report of Medical Exam and Vaccination Record
Copy of Form I-94, Entry/Exit Record
Copies of all pages in your passport. If you do not have a passport, you should submit an explanation of why you do not have a passport.
A list showing the dates of all arrivals and departures from the United States while you were in S nonimmigrant status with an explanation for each departure of why you left the United States;
Evidence of the relationship to the principal S nonimmigrant witness or informant (e.g., birth certificate, marriage certificate) if you are filing for a green card as a derivative beneficiary of an S nonimmigrant
Proof of employment