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The T-Visa is a type of immigration status in the United States that is designed to help victims of human trafficking. It provides temporary immigration benefits to individuals who have been subjected to trafficking and are willing to assist law enforcement (or even report the employer to U.S. Department of Labor for not paying fairly, not paying overtime, violations at the place of work) in the investigation and prosecution of trafficking or labor violations cases. Here is a simple explanation of the T-Visa, its requirements, and who can apply:

1️⃣ Purpose:

The T-Visa aims to protect victims of human trafficking by granting them legal status in the United States. This allows them to stay and work temporarily, providing them with access to certain benefits and services.

2️⃣ Eligibility:

To be eligible for a T-Visa, an individual must meet specific criteria:

👉 Must be a victim of severe human trafficking. This involves recruitment, harboring, or transportation through force, fraud, or coercion for purposes of exploitation.

👉 Present in the United States, American Samoa, or a U.S. port of entry due to trafficking.

👉 If they were to return to their home country, they must demonstrate suffering extreme hardship. This includes a threat of physical and psychological harm.

3️⃣ Application Process:

To apply for a T-Visa, the individual must submit a detailed application to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The application includes various forms and supporting documents, such as personal statements, evidence of trafficking, and law enforcement certifications.

4️⃣ Benefits:

If granted a T-Visa, the individual can stay in the United States for up to four years and may be eligible for certain benefits. This includes the ability to work legally, access to public benefits, and the opportunity to apply for certain immigration benefits for family members.

5️⃣ Assistance to Law Enforcement:

One crucial requirement for obtaining and maintaining a T-Visa is the willingness to cooperate with law enforcement. During an investigation or prosecution of human trafficking cases, cooperation can include providing information, testifying in court, or assisting law enforcement agencies.

It’s important to note that the T-Visa is a complex legal process. Applicants are strongly advised to seek the assistance of an experienced immigration attorney or a specialized, recognized organization. This ensures they receive support as victims of human trafficking. These resources can guide individuals through the application process, help gather the necessary evidence, and ensure compliance with all requirements.

Call Shepelsky Law today to get answers on your questions about immigration reform updates.

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