Victims of Criminal Activity

 

Visas for Victims of Crimes and Human Trafficking

U and T visas are for victims of violent crimes committed in the United States. Some family members of crime victims may also be eligible for U and T visas. To obtain such a visa, an applicant must submit a petition to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), a division of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS).  If the petition is approved, the applicant will receive form I-797. The applicant then makes an appointment at the embassy to apply for the visa.

Visa Specific Information

  • U Visa: The U visa is intended for victims of violent crimes who assist with the investigation of the criminal activity or the prosecution of the accused. In some cases, immediate family members are also eligible. For more information about this visa class click here.
  • T Visa: The T visa is intended for victims of severe forms of trafficking in persons. In some cases, immediate family members are also eligible. For more information about this visa class click here.

Required Documentation: 

  1. Valid Passport.
  2. The DS-160 application form confirmation page.
  3. Original Bank Receipt for Application Fee.
  4. Birth and/or marriage certificates proving the relationship between principal applicant and any derivative applicants. Applicants should also strive to provide additional documentation, including pictures, joint legal documents, etc.

The above items should not be considered an exhaustive list and presentation of these documents does not guarantee visa issuance.  Applicants should be prepared to explain to the visa officer the circumstances that gave rise to the petition, and the relationship between applicants.

Application Procedures
For general instructions on applying for a visa, click here. The following are answers to frequently asked questions regarding the procedure for obtaining a U or T visa. (Please note, some of the procedures for U and T visa applicants depart from the procedures for other visa types.)

  1. Do all applicants have to appear in person at the embassy for an interview?Answer: Yes, all applicants must be interviewed by a visa officer.   
  2. Will members of the same family be fingerprinted and interviewed the same day?Answer: So long as family members select the same date when completing their online/phone application, they will be fingerprinted and interviewed together.
  3. The applicant lives outside of Mexico City. How long will the applicant have to be in Mexico City to be fingerprinted and interviewed?Answer: Applicants are generally fingerprinted and interviewed on consecutive days, so applicants spend two days in Mexico City. However, U and T visa applicants who need to be fingerprinted and interviewed on the same day can be accommodated. To request this accommodation, please schedule an interview following the normal procedure, then send an email to u_tvisasmexico@state.gov to request a change to same-day processing, explaining the reason for the request. 
  4. How do I go about getting my fingerprints taken for FD-258 card?Answer: Please contact the closest Consulate or the Embassy and we will provide you with specific instructions. Contact Us
  5. I have an approved petition from USCIS. Is the State Department obligated to issue a visa?Answer: No. There are a number of reasons why an applicant with an approved petition may fail to qualify for a visa. The most common reason is because an applicant accrued an ineligibility and failed to obtain the necessary waivers from USCIS. Applicants should obtain necessary waivers from USCIS for all ineligibilities as part of the petitioning process. Only then can a consular officer approve a U or T visa. A list of the most common ineligibilities is available by clicking here.
  6. Where do  I submit my original petition for a U or T visa?Answer: The initial petitions must be submitted to USCIS. The embassy can only see applicants once the petition is approved.
  7. I have a question about the status of a pending petition I submitted to USCIS.Answer: The embassy only gains access to applicant information after the USCIS approves the petition. We cannot provide information or advice about a pending petition. Please contact USCIS directly with your question.  For more information please visit www.uscis.gov