On June 14, 2021, the USCIS announced a significant change concerning the current policy for granting deferred action and employment authorization to U visa applicants.
U visas provide legal status in the U.S. to victims of certain types of crimes who assist law enforcement.
The law limits the number of U visas issued each year to 10,000. There is now a significant line for U visas. USCIS has historically waited for several years (now at about 4-5) before granting permission to work and a temporary status called deferred action to those who are waiting in line.
Through this new policy, USCIS will review U visa applications more quickly and issue employment authorization and deferred action to U visa applicants. USCIS must see the applicants have bona fide (good faith) U visa applications filed to then approve the temporary benefits of deferred action and work permits. While we expect this process to dramatically reduce the wait time for U visa applicants, we do not yet know how fast the applications will be processed.
This new guidance is effective immediately for all those who have Form I-918 and Form I-918A (U Visa applications) currently pending or who filed on or after June 14, 2021.
Please contact Knudson & Associates today if you have any questions associated with this matter or are interested in finding out more information.