USCIS has announced that it has approved the statutory maximum 10,000 petitions for U visa status for FY 2013. The U visa cap has been reached for the fourth straight year since USCIS began issuing U visas in 2008.
USCIS will continue to accept U-visa petitions and process them in the order in which they are received. USCIS will resume issuing U visas on October 1, 2013, the first day of FY 2014.
About U Visas
U Visas are available for victims of crimes who have suffered substantial mental or physical abuse and are willing to assist law enforcement and government officials in the investigation or prosecution of the criminal activity. To qualify for the U visa, the following eligibility requirements must be satisfied:
- The individual must have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse as a result of having been a victim of a qualifying criminal activity;
- The individual must have information concerning that criminal activity;
- The individual must have been helpful, is being helpful, or is likely to be helpful in the investigation or prosecution of the crime;
- The criminal activity violated U.S. laws
A petition for U nonimmigrant status must also contain a certification of helpfulness from a certifying agency. Certifying agencies can be Federal, State or local law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, judges or other authority that investigates or prosecutes criminal activity.