Special Immigrant Status Visas
The following guide is intended as a general overview of the types of special immigrant status visas.
U Visa - Victims of CrimeThe U visa is for immigrants who have been victims of a crime and assist or are willing to assist U.S. authorities in investigating and/or prosecuting that crime.
To be eligible to apply for a U visa, a person must:
Have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse as a result of being a victim of certain types of crimes;
Possess information about that criminal activity;
Provide a certification from a law enforcement official, prosecutor, or judge that the person has been, is being helpful, or is likely to be helpful in the investigation or prosecution of the criminal activity; and
Show that the criminal activity violated the laws of the United States
S Visa - Witnesses and InformantsThe S classification is for persons who are able to help United States law enforcement personnel by proving information about criminal or terrorist activities.
To 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.
T1 - Victims of TraffickingThe T-1 visa is for victims of human trafficking and intended to prevent their deportation.
To be eligible for an T visa, a person must:
The person must be the victim of "severe trafficking" in persons;
The person must be physically present in the United States;
Unless the person is less than 18 years old, the Attorney General and the Secretary of State must agree the person complied with a reasonable request by law enforcement authorities to assist in the investigation or prosecution of such trafficking or in the investigation of crimes where acts of trafficking are at least one central reason for the crime; and
The person would "suffer extreme hardship involving unusual and severe harm" if the person was sent back home.