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VAWA – Violence Against Women Act

As a battered spouse, child or parent, you may file an immigrant visa petition under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), as amended by the Violence against Women Act (VAWA).
The VAWA provisions in the INA allow certain spouses, children, and parents of U.S. citizens and permanent residents (Green Card holders) to file a petition for themselves, without the abuser’s knowledge. This allows victims to seek both safety and independence from their abuser, who is not notified about the filing.

The VAWA provisions, which apply equally to women and men, are permanent and do not require congressional reauthorization

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