The Violence Against Women Act was passed in 1994. This act was created to protect women or men from domestic violence situations. From the immigrant's perspective, VAWA allows an immigrant to request a Green Card without the assistance of the abuser spouse. Normally, if a non-citizen is requesting a green card through a family member, that family member will need to sponsor the non-citizen and be present during the immigration interview. Through the VAWA petition, however, the non-citizen seeking a green card will be able to petition ALONE and will not depend on the abuser family member for the filling of an application. This is an incredible benefit granted to those that qualify for a VAWA petition.
If you are an immigrant and a victim of domestic violence, you might qualify for VAWA. Call Attorney Juliana Zach to determine your rights. Mrs. Zach is an experienced, immigration attorney in Danbury who understands victim's rights and their delicate situations.
Real life story
The following is an example of a women who survived an abused relationship and became a beneficiary of a VAWA application. Cortesy of www.immigrantjustice.org
Erika came to the United States with her parents when she was six years old. She has lived in fear for most of her adult life because of her ex-husband. The couple met as high school freshmen in Chicago. After the couple married, Erika’s husband began to assault her. He would lock Erika in the house all day when he was at work, even when she was the caretaker for their infant son. When her husband was deployed to Iraq, he opened a separate bank account and denied Erika access to the couple’s income. Because Erika was undocumented, she could not work to earn money to feed her children and relied on her parents to buy food. The abuse continued when Erika’s husband returned home, and eventually Erika reached out for help and left the relationship. Erika says, “I would have lived in fear my whole life without protection under the Violence Against Women Act.” Erika now has lawful status and a job as an office manager. “I am not afraid that my ex-husband will take my children away from me or have me deported, as he threatened to do before,” she says. “I have high hopes for the future. I want to go back to school to study culinary arts, and because of VAWA, I can reach for that goal.”
You too could benefit from VAWA. Call us for a case evaluation!!