People in desperate circumstances in other countries are often vulnerable to human traffickers. These are people who may present themselves as someone who can help immigrants get into the U.S. In reality they are trapping people intoforced servitudewith threats, coercion and even violence.

If you or someone you know came to the U.S. and in a situation that could be defined as human trafficking you may be eligible for a form of relief known as a T Visa. The T Visa was created to give relief to trafficking victims that allows them to remain in the U.S. for up to four years. Victims may need to help law enforcement find and prosecute their traffickers as part of their eligibility for the T Visa.

If a person is granted a T Visa they may also be able to get visas for certain family members so that they can stay in the U.S. with the victim. Once a victim has received a T Visa he or she may obtainemployment authorization and certain federal and state benefits and services.People with T Visas can use the four years to pursue a Green Card or other form of relief to prevent deportation, though obtaining a T -Visa does not mean the victim will necessarily obtain a Green Card.

Immigrants who are already in the U.S. may be victims of trafficking as well. The definition applies even if the traffickers did not bring the person across the border. You can find more information about how the U.S. legal system identifies someone as a victim of traffickinghere.

If you think the definition applies to you or someone you know, it’s best to consult with an immigration attorney to discuss such a claim.

If you believe you could be eligible for a T Visa or would like legal advice about your immigration status in general, please reach out to us atLanderholm Immigration, A.P.Cor call us at (510) 756-4468. We are knowledgeable in all aspects of immigration law and we can help you evaluate youroptions.