A battered spouse, child, and in some cases parent, can file an immigrant visa petition for residency under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). A spouse, child, or parent of a U.S. citizen or permanent resident may file a petition to seek safety and independence from the abuser. A spouse may file on their own behalf or on the behalf of their child who was abused by a U.S. citizen or permanent resident spouse. In order to be eligible a spouse must: Be (or was in the two years prior to filing) legitimately married to a U.S. citizen or permanent resident abuser; And suffered battery or extreme cruelty by that spouse. When filing a VAWA application, the applicant must also submit evidence demonstrating that they qualify for the relief. Often, Forensic Psychologists are utilized to produce reports to assist establishing credibility of the applicant as evidence of their psychological, emotional, or physical abuse that qualifies as “extreme cruelty.”

At our practice, we are keenly aware of the sensitive and confidential nature of these cases. We are familiar with the VAWA Act of 1994 and the expansions and improvements of the law and address your referral question within this specific legal context. Dr. Maddux is Board Certified in Forensic Psychology by the ABPP, which is a mark of proficiency in forensic psychology that is recognizes by judicial decisions. Learn your options during a free, no-obligation consultation with Dr. Maddux.