What to Know Before Submitting the Fairfax VAWA Application

Submitting and preparing the VAWA application is a slow process but is a very good option for people to free themselves of abusive relationships and to move forward with their lives and gain independence and autonomy from their abuser.

Getting the help from a VAWA attorney will help make the application process bearable. The VAWA application is very time consuming and involves a large amount of paperwork. An experienced Fairfax VAWA lawyer will guide you through the application process and help you throughout the whole process.

Common Misconceptions about the VAWA Application

One misconception that people have is that they need a tremendous amount of hard evidence and court records. Neither of those are needed in the application process.

Often there are situations where people are completely isolated and afraid of calling the police because of their undocumented status. A lot of times, we don’t have any of that kind of hard evidence and that does require more work on our side to prove the abuse, but it definitely does not mean that they don’t qualify.

Lastly, another misconception found is that a lot people believe that they need physical abuse or they need to have suffered physical abuse in order to qualify, which is not true. It is easier to get it if they have suffered physical abuse but psychological, sexual, or emotional abuse can also definitely make them eligible for VAWA.

Important Facts to Know

A VAWA applicant should know that it is generally advisable to get a VAWA attorney for these occasions because there are very heavy documentary requirements to prove all of the elements. Another thing to know is not to discount the proof needed for the seemingly easier elements of the application which would be the proof of the bona fide marriage or the proof of the abuser’s lawful status.

Just like in an ordinary marriage case petition, it is not enough just to show a marriage certificate and then move on from there; they have to show a bona fide relationship and that it was entered into for reasons other than just for immigration purposes.

What to Look for in the VAWA Applications

There are a couple basic questions that a VAWA attorney is going to need to know:

  • Was the marriage bona fide?
  • Was the person abusing a citizen or resident?
  • Did they cohabitate together?
  • What was the level of abuse? i.e physical, sexual or mental

It really takes a long interview with the client because in many cases, there are a lot of people that think that they do not even understand some aspects of their relationship are, in fact, abusive. They think it is a normal part of their relationship.

Any kind of psychological or emotional bullying can qualify as abuse also. To a lot of people, it is like speaking to them about what is and is not normal about their relationship and where that line is crossed.

Contact an Attorney Today

The VAWA application process is long and can lead to a lot of questions. Consulting with an experienced VAWA attorney is important and will help you through the difficult process. If you have any questions or hesitations, please contact a Fairfax VAWA lawyer today.