Human Trafficking Victim and Family Granted T Visas and Green Cards
September 8, 2020
Cleary Gottlieb successfully represented Ms. M, a citizen of Mexico, in her application for T nonimmigrant status (T visa), a form of immigration relief available to individuals who are or have been victims of human trafficking, and in her application for lawful permanent residence, also known as a green card.
Because Ms. M was a child when trafficked, Cleary was also able to secure T visas and green cards for Ms. M’s mother and sister.
Ms. M was brought to the United States by her mother when she was a young child. When Ms. M was only 15 years old she ran away from her home in Delaware to California. Once there, she was targeted by a trafficker who kept her captive in a house for approximately a year using violence, drugs, and coercion to force her to have sex with adult men. Ms. M managed to escape from her trafficker and returned to Delaware where her pediatrician identified her as a trafficking survivor and referred her to Sanctuary for Families. Sanctuary for Families then referred the case to Cleary, and the firm assisted Ms. M in reporting her trafficker to law enforcement and in applying for T visas for her, her mother, and her minor sister. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services granted the T visa applications in 2016, allowing Ms. M, her mother, and her sister to lawfully live and work in the United States for a period of four years. Before the T visas expired, Cleary helped Ms. M, her mother, and her sister apply for lawful permanent residence in the United States. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services granted these applications in 2020. As a result, Ms. M, her mother, and her sister now have green cards and will become eligible to naturalize as U.S. citizens in five years.