T Visas

Victims of Human Trafficking: T Nonimmigrant Status

 

T nonimmigrant status was created to strengthen the ability of law enforcement agencies to investigate and prosecute human trafficking, while at the same time offering protection to victims. The T Visa is specifically used to protect individuals who are or have been victims of human trafficking by allowing the victims to remain in the United States to assist in an investigation or prosecution of human trafficking.

To become eligible for a T Visa, an individual must:

  • 1) be a current or past victim of trafficking, as defined by law,
  • 2) be in the United States, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, or at a port of entry due to trafficking,
  • 3) comply with any reasonable request from a law enforcement agency for assistance in the investigation or prosecution of human trafficking. If the applicant is under the age of 18, or is for some reason unable to help law enforcement due to physical or psychological trauma,
  • 4) Demonstrate that they would suffer extreme hardship involving unusual and severe harm if they were removed from the United States,
  • 5) the applicant must prove that they are admissible to the United States, if the applicant is not admissible, they may apply for waiver via Form I-192.

In an application for T Visa status, an individual must submit: Form I-914, three passport size photos, a personal statement that explains how one was a victim of trafficking, and evidence to show that the individual meets the eligibility requirements.

There are certain situations which make family members of T Visa holders eligible to receive a derivative T visa themselves. If a visa holder is under the age of 21, then they may apply on behalf of their spouse, children, parents, and any unmarried brothers and sisters under the age of 18. If the visa holder is 21 years of age or older, they may apply on behalf of their spouse and children. To become a qualified family member of a T Visa holder, each dependent must file a Form I-914 at the same time as the T Visa application or at a later time.

For more information regarding T Visas, and the process of obtaining a T Visa, please contact the Law Office of Jeffery Bennett via phone: 816-759-2776 (English), 816-759-2777 (Spanish); or via email: jyb@jybennettlaw.com.