skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 228820 Find in a Library
Title: U Visa: An Effective Resource for Law Enforcement
Journal: FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin  Volume:78  Issue:10  Dated:October 2009  Pages:10-16
Author(s): Stacey Ivie, M.Ed.; Natalie Nanasi, J.D.
Date Published: October 2009
Page Count: 7
Type: Legislation/Policy Description
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article explains how police can gain greater cooperation from immigrant populations by publicizing the benefits of the U visa, which provides a pathway to legal status for immigrant crime victims who have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse resulting from victimization; have information regarding a crime; and assist in the investigation or prosecution.
Abstract: The incident at issue, however, must have violated U.S. law or occurred within U.S. borders or a U.S. territory or possession. In order to obtain a U visa, victims must demonstrate to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services their willingness to cooperate in a qualifying investigation or prosecution by a law enforcement agency, prosecutors, judges, or any other appropriate authority. Those who qualify for U visas receive temporary legal status and work authorization. After 3 years, they may gain eligibility for lawful permanent resident status (i.e., a Green Card). The benefits provided by the U visa make it an effective tool for encouraging immigrant victims, particularly domestic violence victims, to report their victimization and cooperate with police in investigating and prosecuting the alleged perpetrator. Congress created the U visa program as part of the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000, recognizing that many crime victims have temporary or no legal status in the United States. They fear assisting law enforcement because it could lead to their deportation. Issues addressed in this article include the role of law enforcement agencies in the U visa application process, who can sign the law enforcement certification form, consequences if the victim stops cooperating, and whether U visas may encourage the filing of false police reports. 17 notes
Main Term(s): Police-minority relations
Index Term(s): Federal legislation; Immigrants/Aliens; Legal liability; Police community relations programs; Police services for victims; Police-victim interaction; Victim attitudes; Victim reactions to crime; Victim reactions to the Criminal Justice System
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.