A Milwaukee Immigration Attorney Can Help Victims of Domestic Violence Petition for an I-360 Immigrant Visa

Domestic Violence - Milwaukee Immigration Attorney

At Gamino Law Offices, LLC, our dedicated Milwaukee immigration attorney assists families, women, and children escape from domestic violence. We know how to arrange for you to stay in the United States away from your abuser. Unfortunately, some people who come to the United States find themselves in abusive relationships. However, what happens when someone’s right to live in the United States is dependent on their spouse’s status as a Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) or US Citizen but they are a victim of domestic violence?

Wisconsin Immigration Attorneys Working to End Domestic Violence

Indeed, a good Milwaukee immigration attorney understands that victims of domestic abuse crimes may be afraid to find help. However, an immigrant who is a victim of domestic violence, or sexual assault, needs to know that support is available from our immigration lawyers in Milwaukee. Specifically, we can help you file an I-360 Immigrant Visa Petition for crime victims. In particular, this immigrant petition allows approved applicants to legally remain and work in the United States. Furthermore, we keep you safe by submitting your immigrant visa petition without your abusive spouse knowing!

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FAQ: Immigrant Visa Petitions for Crime Victims

  • Who is eligible to file an I-360 as a victim of domestic violence?
  • Will my abuser find out about my petition?
  • What are the eligibility requirements for a spouse to receive an I-360 immigrant visa based on domestic abuse?
  • Are there diffent eligibility requirements for a child to receive an I-360 immigrant visa based on domestic violence?
  • What are the eligibility requirements for a parent to receive an I-360 immigrant visa for relief from being a crime victim?
  • How do I file to receive an I-360 immigrant visa as a victim of domestic violence?
  • Will I be eligible to work legally in United States if I receive an I-360 immigrant visa?
  • Will I be eligible for Permanent Residence (Green Card)?

How to leave an abusive relationship through immigration:

Who is eligible to file an I-360 petition as a victim of domestic violence?
  • Spouse:  Spouses may file an I-130 petition for a visa under this section if you are, or were, the battered or abused spouse of a US citizen or permanent resident.  Furthermore, you may also include your unmarried children under age 21 in your petition (if they have not filed for themselves). You can learn more about self-filing without your abusive spouse here.
  • Parent:  Parents may petition for a visa under this section if their child has been battered or abused by your US citizen or permanent resident spouse.  Additionally, your other children may also be included on your petition, even if they have not been abused (if they have not filed for themselves).  Similarly, parents of a US citizen may also file if you have been abused by your US citizen son or daughter.
  • Children:  Children may file if under age 21, unmarried, and are being or have been battered or abused by your parent who is a US citizen or legal permanent resident.  Additionally, you may be eligible to file up to age 25. A child may have extended eligibility under the extended filing deadline if you can show that the abuse mainly caused your delay in filing. You can learn more about self-filing without your abusive spouse here.
Will my abuser find out about my petition?

As a battered spouse, child or parent your immigrant visa petition can be filed without your abuser’s knowledge!  The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), as amended by the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), allows victims to find safety and independence from an abuser. Specifically, your abuser is not notified about your filing.  

What are the eligibility requirements for a spouse to receive an I-360 immigrant visa based on domestic abuse?

​To have eligibility to obtain an immigrant visa based on domestic violence as an abused spouse:

  1. You must have been in one of the following abusive relationships:
    • Married to a US citizen or Legal Permanent Resident who is abusive, or
    • Marriage to the abuser ended due to death of your spouse, or divorce related to the abuse, within 2 years prior to filing the petition, or
    • You believed you were legally married to an abusive legal permanent resident or US citizen but, due solely to bigamy of your abusive spouse, the marriage was not legitimate, or
    • ​Your abusive spouse lost or renounced legal permanent residency or citizenship due to and act of domestic violence in the past 2 years.
  2. The abuse must have occurred:
    • In the United States by your spouse who is a US citizen or legal permanent resident, or 
    • ​Abroad by your spouse who is a US citizen or legal permanent resident, while your spouse was an employee of the United States government or a US uniformed services, or
    • To your child who has been abused by your US citizen spouse or legal permanent resident.
  3. You entered into the marriage in good faith.
  4. You have resided with your spouse.
  5. Your moral character is good.
Do different eligibility requirements apply for a child to receive an I-360 immigrant visa based on domestic violence?

To be eligible as an abused child you must:

  1. Be the child of:
    • An abusive legal permanent resident or US citizen, or 
    • An abusive parent who lost citizenship or lawful permanent resident due to an act of domestic violence.
  2. The abuse must have occurred at either of the following times:
    1. In the United States by your US citizen or legal permanent resident parent.
    2. Abroad by your US citizen or legal permanent resident parent while your parent was an employee of the United States government or a member of the US uniformed services.
  3. Have resided with your abusive parent.
  4. Be able to prove your relationship to your parent.
  5. If over age 14, you must provide evidence of good moral character.
What are the eligibility requirements for a parent to receive an I-360 immigrant visa for relief from being a crime victim?

​To be eligible as a parent you must:

  • Be the parent of of a US citizen who died or lost citizenship due to an incident of domestic violence within 2 years prior to filing.
  • Have been abused by your US citizen child.
  • Have resided with your US citizen child who abused you.
  • Be a person of good moral character.
How do I file to receive an I-360 immigrant visa as a victim of domestic violence?
  1. ​Complete an I-360 Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant; and all required documents of support.
  2. ​File the petition in the Vermont Service Center
What happens after I file my I-360?
  • If all of the filing requirements have been met, you will receive a Prima Facie Determination Notice.  In particular, you may use this notice to obtain public benefits from government agencies for certain victims of domestic violence.  Specifically, the notice is valid for 150 days.  
  • When your petition is approved, if you do not have legal immigration status in the United States, USCIS may place you in deferred action. Deferred action allows you to stay in the United States.
Will I be eligible to work legally in United States if I receive an I-360 immigrant visa?
  • Once your I-360 has been approved and you have been placed in deferred action you may apply to work legally in the United States using the I-765 Application for Employment Authorization form.  However, you must file the I-756 application in the Vermont Service Center.  
  • Children included in your I-360 petition who are otherwise eligible to work in the United States may also apply for work authorization.
Will I be eligible for Permanent Residence (Green Card)?

Once your I-360 petition has been approved you may be eligible to apply for your green card.  Children included in your approved I-360 petition may also be eligible to apply.

In conclusion, contact a Milwaukee immigration attorney to assist you with any of your United States immigration law needs today. You could also check out our areas of practice to see all the ways our law firm can assist you.