Battered Noncitizen
(01/01/22 –12/31/22)
A battered noncitizen is an individual who has suffered abuse or extreme cruelty while living with their abuser in the United States (U.S.). The abuse must have been caused by any of the following:
Relative of the parent or spouse who resides in the same home as the battered noncitizen. The parent or spouse must not actively have participated in the battery or cruelty.
Only battered noncitizens designated as qualified are potentially eligible for NA and CA. To be a qualified battered noncitizen, they must possess a Prima Facie Determination petition for immigration status. The petition may be in an approved or pending status. The petition may be in one of the following categories:
Petition for Alien Relative (I-130) form filed by their spouse or the child’s parent
A form I-130 petition as a widow(er) of a U.S. citizen
Self-petition under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) application for cancellation of removal or suspension of deportation filed as a victim of domestic violence. The Self-Petition must be completed on the Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant (I-360) form. The following individuals are eligible to complete a self-petition under VAWA:
Spouses abused by a U.S. citizen or LPR. (This includes an intended spouse or a former spouse.) The spouse may also complete a self-petition for all their unmarried children under age 21 when the child has not completed their own petition.
Parents may complete a Self-Petition when they are abused by their U.S. citizen child and the abusive child is 21 or older. This includes stepparents.
Unmarried children under the age of 21 when they are abused by a U.S. citizen or LPR parent. This includes stepchildren or adopted children. When the abusive parent causes a delay in completing the Self-Petition, the I-360 may be completed after the abused individual turns 21. The I-360 must be completed prior to their 25th birthday.
The abuse occurred in the U.S.
The noncitizen no longer resides with the abusive person
Have the participant write a statement giving the following information:
The citizenship status of the abuser
The participant’s relationship with the abuser
When the abuse occurred
When they moved away from the abuser
Other than the Prima Facie determination petition, do they have any other USCIS documented status
Document the case file with all the facts related to the claim.
For potential eligibility, qualified battered noncitizens must have five (5) years in a qualified noncitizen status, unless they meet one of the following exemptions:
LPR with 40 quarters (their own, their spouse’s when married (not ending in divorce), and a parents’ up until the child’s 18th birthday)
Deportation withheld
Cuban or Haitian entrant
Military connection – veteran, active, spouse, or dependent child
Receiving benefits or assistance for blindness or disability
For NA - Lawful noncitizen children under the age of 18 automatically meet citizenship status
NOTE The date of legal entry into the U.S. and the length of legal residency are not NA eligibility requirements for legal noncitizen children under the age of 18.
For CA - A lawful noncitizen must have entered the U.S. prior to 08/22/1996. When they entered the U.S. prior to 08/22/1996, they must provide all documentation verifying continuous residency in the U.S.
NOTE Participant statement verification must be provided when documented or collateral contact verification does not cover any period of time since entry. The participant statement must explain where the participant was during the time period that written and collateral contact verification does not cover.
Inform the participant of the following legal resources they may contact:
When a qualified noncitizen claims to be a battered noncitizen, the supervisor must complete the following:
Verify that the case file is documented with all the facts of the battered noncitizen claim and all documents were provided.
Priority upload(g) the petition, the battered noncitizen statement, any supporting documentation, and when applicable, supporting continuous residence documentation, into OnBase(g).
Elevate the case situation to the Policy Support Team (PST) following the Request for Policy Clarification or Field Inquiry elevation process
When uploading to OnBase is not available, email the PST copies of the petition, all the battered noncitizen documentation, and when applicable, supporting continuous residence documentation. Staff must ensure that the Case Name and Number is on every document.
When follow-up emails are sent to the PST, format the subject line as follows:
Provide the PST assignment number (YY-XXXX)
After the assignment number, indicate Documents to Support Battered Noncitizen Request
Document the case file(g) that the information was emailed to the PST.
The PST notifies the requestor via email whether the battered noncitizen meets qualified noncitizen eligibility.
The PST responds with the notification of the final designation of the noncitizen. A battered noncitizen who meets qualified noncitizen eligibility may adjust their USCIS status. When this adjustment and the FAA notification occurs, FAA uses the new status eligibility requirements.