The U visa is a United States non-immigrant 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 non-immigrant 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.