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Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

Houston Immigration Lawyers

The Violence Against Women Act ("VAWA") was passed in 1994. It allows abused immigrant spouses and children of United States citizens and lawful permanent residents to obtain a green card. Under VAWA, an abused immigrant spouse or child may self-petition for lawful permanent status by filing Form I-360 with USCIS, without having to rely on the abusive USC or LPR spouse or parent to file a petition.

Who Can Apply:

  • Abused spouses of USCs or LPRs
  • Spouses of USCs or LPRs whose children have been abused by their USC or LPR spouse
  • Abused children of USCs or LPRs
  • Abused parents of USCs who qualify as immediate relatives

Requirements (Self-petitioning spouse):

  • Good moral character
  • Marriage to a USC or LPR
  • Marriage was entered into in good faith
  • During marriage, immigrant spouse or child was battered or subject to extreme cruelty by her USC or LPR spouse
  • Current or past residence with USC or LPR spouse

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Please note that even an abused spouse whose marriage to a USC or LPR ended within the past two years may still self-petition, provided that it can be established that it was a bona fide marriage and that there was a connection between of the termination of the marriage and the battering or extreme cruelty. Evidently, VAWA cases involve very sensitive matters.

If you or someone that you know has a VAWA matter, please do not hesitate to contact our Houston Immigration attorneys for an evaluation of your case.

Success Stories

"We helped a client get his case approved based on marriage (USC wife petitioned for Mexican husband). The case was initially denied when he applied on his own. USCIS thought they didn't have enough proof of cohabitation. In addition, there were discrepancies during the initial interview. USCIS was claiming marriage fraud. Attorney Sebastian Simon refiled everything, went to the interview and case got approved."

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