U Nonimmigrant Status

Commonly, we use Waivers to help clients with criminal issues. Not every criminal issue will require you to file a Waiver (for example, if you were wrongfully arrested and the charges were dropped).

You need to know that for purposes of immigration, pleading “no contest” constitutes a conviction).

If you do have a criminal conviction, it can be waived for purposes of the U Visa with few rare exceptions, for example:

  • Nazi affiliation;
  • genocide;
  • torture;
  • extrajudicial killings

cannot be waived.

In order for USCIS to decide to approve your Waiver, you must prove that it is in the public or national interest for the Waiver to be approved.

This will result in a case-by-case analysis where the “bad” parts are weighed against the “good” parts. Some “bad” or negative aspects of your case may include:

  • the severity of the crime you committed;
  • the number of crimes you have committed;
  • if you committed any crimes recently.

Some of the good aspects or some things that might help your case may include:

  • if you’ve been particularly helpful and cooperative with the police and other authorities in your role as the victim of a crime;
  • if you earn a livelihood;
  • family ties in the United States;
  • community service;
  • other relevant issues.

Examples of some of the types of papers that you will need in order to warrant an approval of your Waiver include:

  • police reports and court dispositions for your convictions;
  • a statement from you describing the circumstances that resulted in your conviction/s;
  • letters of reference and recommendation.

These papers are in addition to the papers for the U Visa.

In addition to Waivers for criminal issues, another common reason for needing a Waiver concerns past issues with immigration fraud. Perhaps you lied in order to get a work permit or employment authorization card, and perhaps you lied or committed some fraud in entering the United States. You will need a Waiver if you entered the United States illegally.

Yet another common reason for needing a Waiver concerns becoming a public charge. This concerns individuals who have received government assistance in the past or are likely to require government assistance in the future. There are many other reasons why you might need a Waiver but above we addressed some of the more common reasons.

Call us now to determine if you’d be a good candidate for a U Visa and also to determine if your particular circumstances will require a Waiver. We have offices in Sacramento but our clients are located all over the United States and abroad.

Related Posts: Frequently Asked Questions about U Visas