Violence Against Women Act

Attorney Luis Ruiz

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Houston VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) Lawyer

Domestic violence is a pervasive issue that plagues our society. All over the world, men, women, and children suffer extensive trauma as a result of being victims of domestic violence at the hands of their abusive family member. The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) is congressional action that was passed in order to help protect victims of domestic violence. Specifically, in the immigration law context, it allows abused spouses, parents, and children to free themselves from the cycle of abuse that is domestic and family violence. Although called the Violence Against Women Act, the law applies to men and women equally.

 

What is the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)?

 

The Violence Against Women Act is a federal law that was enacted in the United States in 1994. This law offers comprehensive civil and criminal protections against domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking. The Violence Against Women Act was created to provide federal funding for local governments, law enforcement agencies, and non-profit organizations in their efforts to combat domestic violence. The goal of the legislation is to protect people from these crimes and ensure that incidents of this nature are handled properly. In the immigration law context, it provides a pathway to lawful permanent resident status, and other immigration relief, as well as a pathway to U.S. citizenship, for the abused spouse, abused parent, or abused child, of a u.s citizen or permanent resident.

 

How does VAWA help protect noncitizens?

 

The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) has made great strides in protecting both adults and children from abuse and domestic violence. One protection that VAWA applicants have is a pathway to legal permanent resident status that does not require the participation or involvement of the noncitizen’s abuser. This relief under VAWA allows eligible victims of domestic violence to “self-petition” for their own permanent resident status. A noncitizen may be eligible to apply under VAWA if they fall under one of the following categories:

 

  • Battered spouses of a United States citizen or a lawful permanent resident spouse (a former spouse could be considered in certain situations)
  • Children (meaning unmarried and under 21 years of age) who have been abused by their U.S. citizen or LPR parents
  • Parents who have been abused by their U.S. citizen children
  • Divorced battered spouses of U.S. citizens or LPRs if the divorce was less than 2 years from filing for relief under VAWA
 

What is Violence?

 

The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) takes into consideration all types of abuse that can occur. The most common types of abuse and violence that we recognize are physical abuse, mental abuse, and emotional abuse. However, for VAWA purposes, any type of abuse that is used to control and manipulate is considered.

 

Other types of abuse that we see often is financial abuse, isolation, and racism.

 

What do I need to show?

 

VAWA applicants must show that they are people of good moral character, that they suffered abuse, and in the case of an abusive spouse, that the couple was legally married and that it was a good faith marriage. There is never a requirement that the police get involved or that there be a police report, but there must still be enough credible evidence of domestic abuse.

 

Why do I need a Houston VAWA Attorney?

 

If you’ve been a victim of violence–either by a United States citizen or lawful permanent resident–then you may be entitled to lawful permanent residence (green card) without your abuser’s knowledge or assistance. If you need legal advice about your specific case or how you can seek immigration benefits for yourself and your family members, then please get in touch with VAWA lawyer Luis Ruiz for a consultation. Consulting with an attorney in regards to your immigration status is completely confidential. There are additional protection that the law, as well as the attorney client relationship, that protect victims who are seeking help to free themselves from an abusive relationship.

You should never attempt to handle any of these issues by yourself because it is vitally important that you receive proper support when going through this process. You deserve peace of mind while protecting yourself, your family, and your future. That’s why we’re here to help ensure that everything goes smoothly with your case.

 

What are some benefits of hiring an experienced Houston immigration lawyer?

 

There are many benefits of hiring an experienced lawyer. At Luis Ruiz Law we take pride in being qualified immigration lawyers who can help guide you through the self petition process. Our Law Offices handle VAWA cases routinely, our team is trained in the heightened confidentiality requirements that sensitive cases like these require and our law firm is ready to stand by you and help you obtain legal status in the United States, first your legal permanent residence (green card) and then U.S. citizenship.

 

When should I contact an immigration attorney?

 

If you’ve been the victim of domestic or family abuse, even if it occurred outside of the United States, then contact experienced immigration attorney, Luis Ruiz. We can help provide immigration relief and help you obtain your green card so that you can free yourself from the abuse. We offer our immigration services to you so that we may help you become a lawful permanent resident in the United States. You are not alone, you are not stuck. You may qualify to fix your immigration status through the VAWA self petition process. A qualified attorney at Luis Ruiz Law can guide you through the complicated VAWA petition process and help you get your life back.

 

Please don’t hesitate to contact Luis Ruiz Law for a consultation. Our law office understand the legal process for an immigrant visa petition, you need an immigration lawyer by your side, and we want to be the one you choose to help you. Call our law offices today and let us handle your immigration case, we want to be able to hand you your green card one day!

If you are in an abusive relationship, seek help, the National Domestic Violence Hotline is available at 1.800.799.7233.

LUIS RUIZ, IMMIGRATION ATTORNEY

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