Explainer: ‘T visa’ qualifications

  • To qualify for a “T visa,” an applicant must satisfy four criteria:

    (Source: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services)

  • Be a victim of a severe form of trafficking in persons

    The regulation defines victims as aliens who are recruited, harbored, transported, provided or obtained for prostitution by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such an act has not attained 18 years of age; or a situation in which the person is forced to provide labor or services through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery.

  • Be physically present in the United States as a result of trafficking

    The applicant must establish that he or she is physically present in the United States, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, or at a port-of-entry on account of a severe form of trafficking in persons. Specifically, the physical presence requirement reaches an alien who is present because he or she is being subjected to a severe form of trafficking in persons; was recently liberated from a severe form of trafficking in persons; or was subject to severe forms of trafficking in persons at some point in the past and whose continuing presence in the United States is directly related to the original trafficking in persons.

  • Comply with reasonable requests for assistance

    The applicant must submit evidence that fully establishes that he or she has complied with any reasonable request for assistance in the investigation or prosecution of acts of severe forms of trafficking in persons, unless the applicant is under the age of 18. Provisions allow USCIS to exempt applicants from the compliance requirement if, in consultation with the attorney general, the applicant is unable to cooperate due to physical or psychological trauma.

  • Be subject to extreme hardship or unusual and severe harm if removed from the U.S.

    The applicant must demonstrate that he or she would suffer extreme hardship involving unusual or severe harm if removed from the United States.  Extreme hardship involving unusual and severe harm is a higher standard than that of extreme hardship as described in 8 CFR Section 240.58.  A finding of extreme hardship involving unusual and severe harm may not be based upon current or future economic detriment, or the lack, or disruption to, social or economic opportunities. 

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