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    Nationwide U-5 Visa Lawyers

    Assisting Siblings of U1 Visa Holders

    U visas are available for victims of violent or sexual crimes who would like to report the guilty parties. There are many kinds of U visas, and U-5 visas are made specifically for the siblings of U1 visa holders. If your sibling has applied for a U1 visa and is helping law enforcement with an investigation into a crime against them, there is a possibility you are eligible for a U-5 visa.

    U-5 visas grant lawful temporary residence for up to four years, which can be extended in certain circumstances. U visa holders can qualify for work authorization and apply for lawful permanent residence after being a visa holder for three years. If your sibling is a U1 visa holder or is applying for a U1 visa, you can submit an application for a U-5 visa at the same time. However, it’s always advisable to consult an experienced immigration legal team to ensure your paperwork is correct and your application is admissible. If you would like to learn more about the U-5 visa application or have any other questions about U visas, contact Elizabeth Rosario Law, PLC. today by calling  616-530-0101

    What is a U-5 Visa?

    A U-5 visa is issued to minor siblings of U1 visa holders. U-5 visas offer protection from deportation and detainment as well as legal temporary resident status. This status lasts for four years but can be extended under some circumstances. Once you have had a U-5 visa for three years, you can work with an attorney on our team to apply for legal permanent residence. Many minor siblings use U visas as a step toward citizenship, as having this visa can expedite the process.

    Applying for a U-5 visa requires filing Form I-918 Supplement A, the Petition for Qualifying Family Member of U1 Recipient. You can file this form at the same time as your sibling files for a U1 visa, or you can wait until they are approved. This petition can also be filed on behalf of children if they are too young to provide personal information about themselves. Other family members may also qualify for U visas, including spouses, children, and parents.

    What Are the Qualifications for a U-5 Visa?

    To qualify for a U-5 visa, you must be a sibling of a U1 visa holder or applicant. You must be a minor, and you also must be unmarried. U1 visa holders must actively participate in the investigation or prosecution of the crime they have reported.

    To qualify for a U1 visa, your sibling must meet the following:

    • They are or were a victim of a qualifying crime
    • They can provide information about the crime to law enforcement
    • The crime involved physical or mental abuse
    • They are willing to assist law enforcement with the investigation and prosecution of the crime
    • They are admissible to the United States (certain exceptions apply)
    • The crime occurred in the United States or is against United States law

    When your sibling files for a U1 visa, they must provide a personal statement with information about the crime and who committed it. They must also sign a form saying they are willing to help officers investigate the crime and any criminals involved in the act.

    Your sibling can file a U-5 visa application on your behalf at the same time as their U1 application. If you need assistance with your application or have questions about whether you qualify, our office can help.

    How Does the USCIS Define a Qualifying Crime?

    The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) defines qualifying criminal activity for U visas. Not all crimes qualify, but most physical and sexual crimes do.

    Below is a list of qualifying crimes for U1 visa holders:

    • Stalking
    • Torture
    • Rape
    • Sexual assault
    • Female genital mutilation
    • Domestic violence
    • Kidnapping
    • Unlawful criminal restraint
    • Abduction
    • Involuntary servitude
    • Abusive sexual contact
    • Extortion
    • Prostitution
    • Murder
    • Manslaughter
    • Other related crimes

    The USCIS may make exceptions if a U visa applicant has been a victim of a particularly heinous crime, even if it is not on this list. If you have concerns about your qualifications, reach out to our office for assistance.

    What Benefits Does the U-5 Visa Offer?

    The main benefit that a U-5 visa offers is protection against deportation and detainment. This is the same benefit that is given to U1 visa holders as they assist law enforcement with their investigation. The U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) cannot detain or deport U visa holders, with limited exceptions. This protection makes many individuals feel safer, especially if they are assisting law enforcement with the prosecution of a crime.

    U-5 visa holders can also be issued temporary work authorization. After you have had a U-5 visa for three years, you can apply for a green card to adjust your immigration status. A U-5 visa often makes it easier to apply for and receive a green card, as you have retained legal temporary status up until then.

    What Can an Immigration Lawyer Do for Me?

    Watching your sibling be the victim of a crime is a harrowing experience. Fortunately, with a U visa, they can seek justice and prosecute the criminals involved. Once your sibling is a U visa holder, you can reap many of the same benefits as they are, provided that you meet the qualifications.

    Applying for a U-5 visa can be difficult, as many immigration forms are confusing and convoluted. Working with an immigration lawyer on our team ensures that your application contains correct information with no mistakes. Getting your U-5 visa can be life-changing, especially if you’d like to get your green card. Please don’t hesitate to reach out today. Contact Elizabeth Rosario Law, PLC. at 616-530-0101.