Questions and Answers: Battered Spouses, Children and Parents Under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)
Q. What if my Form I-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant, is denied?
Q. Can A Man File A Petition For Himself Under The Violence Against Women Act?
Q. Do I Have to Remain Married to My Abusive Spouse Until my Form I-360 is Approved?
The actual grounds for the termination of the marriage do not need to explicitly cite battery or extreme cruelty. After your petition has been filed, legal termination of the marriage will not usually affect the status of your petition. Unfortunately, current USCIS regulations do not reflect these statutory changes and still state that you must be married at the time of filing. USCIS is obligated to follow the statute, and you are no longer required to be married to your abusive spouse at the time of filing. You may wish to seek advice from an immigration attorney or legal advocate regarding this provision.
Q. Can A Divorced Spouse Seek Relief By Filing A Form I-360?
Your Form I-360 will be denied if you re-marry prior to the approval of the Form I-360. Remarriage after the Form I-360 has been approved will not affect the validity of the petition.
Q. What if My Abusive U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident Spouse or Parent (or U.S. Citizen Son or Daughter) Filed a Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, on My Behalf, Which is Still Pending or Was Withdrawn?
Q. Can Anyone Else Assist Me?
You should also know that help is available to you through the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or 1-800-787-3224 [TDD]. The hotline has information about shelters, mental health care, legal advice and other types of assistance, including information about self-petitioning for immigration status.
Last Reviewed/Updated: 09/09/2009