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Domestic violence and immigrants in family court

Author(s) Thronson, Veronica T.
Title Domestic violence and immigrants in family court
Source Juvenile and Family Court Journal, Winter 2012,  pp63-76
Date 2012
Document type Journal article
Coverage USA
Summary This article explores the link between domestic violence and immigration law in the United States. The ways in which the immigration law can enable domestic violence through empowering the abuser is discussed. For example, only the sponsoring petitioner can make the decision to file for qualifying relatives, as beneficiaries have no right to force the filing of petitions on their behalf. An inability to speak English or dependency on the abuser for financial support can also contribute to an immigrant woman being trapped in a domestic violence situation. Immigration relief options for victims of domestic violence are explored, including an analysis of the effectiveness of the Violence Against Women Act. The provisions of the U visa, which gives victims temporary non-immigration status and employment authorisation is also considered. In conclusion the author emphasises the importance of the family court to protect immigrant women who are victims of domestic violence.
Keywords Domestic violence; immigrant; family court; VAWA;
Topic Domestic violence