If you have experienced labor or sexual exploitation in the United States, you may qualify for a T visa. The T visa is a special visa that may be available to individuals who have experienced labor or sex trafficking. It provides four years of lawful immigration status and work authorization, the ability to sponsor family members for lawful immigration status, and a pathway to Lawful Permanent Residence.
Many individuals do not realize that they have had a work experience that qualifies as labor trafficking under the law. Labor trafficking can occur when individuals are working in the United States without legal immigration status. It can also occur while they are working on visas like the H2A, H2B, J-1, H-1B, A-3, G-5, B-1 and others and feel trapped in their sponsored employment.
If you feel that you have been exploited by a current or previous employer, SHG attorneys can determine if you could qualify for a T visa. Common scenarios include:
- Your employer told you they would contact immigration authorities to report you or your co-workers
- Your employer engaged in harassing or intimidating behavior
- Your employer required you or a co-worker to continue working after an injury or tried to prevent you from obtaining proper medical care
- Your employer stole your wages, promised to pay you what they owed only if you kept working, or kept the last paycheck of anyone who left the job
- Your employer caused you to go into debt
- Your employer held your visa over your head to keep you on the job in conditions that were different than you were promised
- Your employer held your passport or your identify documents
Like labor trafficking, many individuals do not realize that the sexual exploitation they have experienced qualifies as sex trafficking under the law. Sex trafficking can occur when individuals are pressured or forced to engage in sexual activity in exchange for “anything of value.” This can include circumstances where individuals are pressured to engage in sex in exchange for food, shelter or other basic necessities or in exchange for crossing the U.S. border.
Our attorneys recognize that these can be difficult conversations. We offer a highly confidential and respectful environment.
In addition to demonstrating that you experienced labor or sex trafficking, you must also demonstrate the following to be eligible for a T visa:
- You have reported to law enforcement officials and are willing to participate in an investigation, if any. Unlike the U visa, the T visa does not require law enforcement to sign a certification. Attorneys from the law offices of Solow, Hartnett & Galvan can assist you to make this report when you are ready.
- You remain in the United States because of your trafficking experience
- You would suffer extreme hardship if removed from the United States
Solow, Hartnett & Galvan’s attorneys are highly experienced in the T visa application process and can provide an honest assessment of the strength of your case to help you decide if applying for a T visa could benefit you and your family.
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