Types of Visas



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If you are attempting to get a visa or green card in the U.S., but are blocked by being inadmissible, you may be eligible to file for a waiver of certain ground based on the extreme hardship your qualified relative will experience if you are not admitted to the United States.

According to a POLICY adopted by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), your waiver will be approved if you can provide strong evidence that your relative will experience either:

  • extreme hardship either in the U.S. (if you were not allowed to come to or stay in the U.S.), or
  • in your home country (if your relative follows you there).

What Is Extreme Hardship?

Extreme hardship has been defined to mean hardship that is greater than what your relative would normally experience if you were not allowed to come to or stay in the United States. It would be not enough, therefore, to show that your relative will miss you, because this would be expected under any type of separation.

There is no specific law or regulation defining what constitutes a “normal” versus an “extreme” hardship, which means that the evidence for each waiver application will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

My reports cover the psychological, emotional, financial, and family hardships that my client will experience.


VAWA = Extreme Hardship and the Violence Against Women Act Immigration Protections

Applicants for VAWA cancellation of removal or VAWA suspension of deportation are required as part of their immigration case to prove that their deportation would cause extreme hardship to themselves, their child or in the case of in immigrant child abuse victim their parent. Extreme hardship is determined based on the facts of each case,1 taking into account the particular facts and the totality of the circumstances of each case.2 In VAWA cancellation and suspension cases it is important to consider how the battering or extreme cruelty experienced by the immigrant victim applicant or their child influences extreme hardship. The battering or extreme cruelty often exacerbated the hardship an immigrant may suffer if deported. Deportation can interfere with a victim’s ability to overcome the harms caused by the battering or extreme cruelty.

VAWA Extreme Hardship Factors:

The nature and extent of the physical and psychological consequences of the battering or extreme cruelty;

The impact of the loss of access to the U.S. courts and criminal justice system (including, but not limited to, the ability to obtain and enforce orders of protection, criminal investigations and prosecutions, and family law proceedings or court orders regarding child support, alimony, maintenance, child custody, and visitation);

The applicant’s or applicant’s child’s need for social, medical, mental health, or other supportive services, particularly those related to the abuse or surviving the abuse, which would not be available or reasonably accessible in the foreign country;

The existence of laws, social practices, or customs in the foreign country that would penalize or ostracize the applicant or applicant’s child for leaving an abusive situation, or for taking action to stop the abuse;

The abuser’s ability or lack thereof to travel to the foreign country, and the ability, willingness, or lack thereof of foreign government authorities to protect the applicant and/or the applicant’s child from future abuse.


The U visa is a United States nonimmigrant visa which is set aside for victims of crimes (and their immediate family members) who have suffered substantial mental or physical abuse while in the U.S. and who are willing to assist law enforcement and government officials in the investigation or prosecution of the criminal activity. It permits such victims to enter or remain in the US when they might not otherwise be able to do so.


There are six legal requirements for U nonimmigrant status:

  • The applicant must have been a victim of a qualifying criminal activity.
  • The applicant must have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse as a result of having been a victim of these criminal activities.
  • The applicant must have information concerning that criminal activity.
  • The applicant must have been helpful, is being helpful, or is likely to be helpful in the investigation or prosecution of the crime.
  • The criminal activity occurred in the United States or violated U.S. laws.
  • The applicant is admissible to the United States under current U.S. immigration laws and regulations; those who are not admissible may apply for a waiver.

Humanitarian Visa Other Humanitarian Visa Options

Aside from asylum and refugees, the United States offers several other humanitarian immigration options for people in need of help.  So, even if an asylum application ultimately fails, there still may be options to prevent deportation.

For a brief and complimentary telephone consultation, please call (914) 261 0596