Attorney Eugenia Ponce of our firm attended an adjustment of status interview last week with our client, based on the client’s approved I-360 VAWA petition. A VAWA petition (Violence Against Women’s Act) allows the spouse, parent, or child of a U.S. citizen, or a Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) who was battered or subject to extreme cruelty to self-petition independently of the abusive U.S. citizen or LPR. The VAWA self-petitioner must meet the statutory requirements which include:

  • she or he has resided with the U.S. citizen or LPR spouse/parent;
  • was subject to extreme cruelty or battery (or in the case of a child, the child was battered or subjected to extreme cruelty) during the marriage with U.S. Citizen or LPR;
  • the marriage was entered into in good faith;
  • she or he is otherwise eligible for immediate relative or preference status; and
  • is a person of good moral character.

We submitted many different kinds of evidence proving the VAWA case. We submitted reports and affidavits from the police, photos showing visible injuries, medical reports, affidavits from school officials, an order of protection against the abuser, and other supporting evidence to establish our client was subject to battery.

Because our client was married to a U.S. citizen, there was an immediate visa available, and Form I-360 VAWA and Form I-485 Adjustment of Status were filed concurrently. Although our client had entered the United States without inspection in 1996, an approved self-petitioner of Form I-360 VAWA is eligible to adjust even if he or she entered without inspection or parole.

Our client’s 16-year-old daughter was also eligible to adjust her status to permanent residence since the daughter was accorded derivative status based on her mother’s approved I-360 VAWA petition.

Both undocumented individuals are now permanent residents of the United States.