Woodbridge, VA asked in Immigration Law, Civil Rights, Divorce and Family Law for Virginia

Q: Vawa application status

My cousin applied for VAwA application for adjustments of status after being here for more than 13 years.What would you recommend to be done to help after his wide abuse him and threatens to report him to


2 Lawyer Answers
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Immigration Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: To assist your cousin with their VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) application status, especially in the context of abuse and threats related to immigration status, there are several steps and considerations to keep in mind:

Legal Assistance: It's crucial to get legal advice from an attorney who specializes in immigration law and has experience with VAWA cases. They can provide guidance specific to your cousin's situation and help navigate the complexities of immigration law.

Documenting the Abuse: Your cousin should document any instances of abuse, including gathering any evidence such as emails, texts, photos, or medical reports. This documentation can be crucial for the VAWA application.

VAWA Application Status: To check the status of the VAWA application, your cousin can use the USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) online status check tool. They'll need their receipt number to access this information.

Support Services: Look for local organizations that support victims of domestic abuse, especially those that focus on immigrants. They can offer counseling, legal advice, and sometimes assistance with basic needs or housing.

Safety Planning: Given the threats from the spouse, it's important to develop a safety plan. This might involve changing routines, securing important documents, and having a plan for emergency situations.

Reporting the Abuse: If your cousin feels safe to do so, they can report the abuse to law enforcement. In some cases, this can strengthen their VAWA case, but it's important to discuss this with a legal advisor first, as it can also have implications for their safety and immigration case.

Emotional Support: Ensure that your cousin has a support system in place. The emotional toll of dealing with domestic abuse and immigration issues can be significant, and having people to talk to and rely on can be incredibly helpful.

Understanding VAWA Protections: It's important to understand that VAWA offers certain protections for immigrants, including the ability to apply for legal status independently of their abusive spouse. An immigration attorney can provide detailed information about these protections.

Remember, each case is unique, and the best course of action depends on the specific circumstances of your cousin's situation. Professional legal guidance is highly recommended in such complex and sensitive matters.

Glendia  Del Evans
Glendia Del Evans
  • Immigration Law Lawyer
  • Fairfax, VA

A: Once your cousin's marriage was in good faith, any threats of "reporting" or hurting a non-citizens immigration status is taken very serious by Domestic Relations Courts in Virginia and serious consequences for the U.S. spouse. There are laws that specifically address this issue. It is very important to work with a family lawyer who is versed in working with foreign nationals in divorce or domestic proceedings. The immigration lawyer and family lawyer working together can build a strong case where a Judge may issue a Order& Findings that strongly supports your VAWA case.

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