The increasing tension in Venezuela governance and population in the last couple of weeks has created panic in many people, in and outside of the country. As a result, many Venezuelans are planning to come or stay in the U.S. Below are some of the ways Venezuelan may qualify to come to or stay in the U.S.
This status is given to a person who is currently in the U.S. in or out of status and demonstrates that he/she is unable or unwilling to return to Venezuela because of persecution or well-founded fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion. The application must be filed within 1 year after arriving in the U.S., unless you can show there are changes in circumstances that affects your eligibility for asylum or extraordinary circumstances that prevent you from filing within one year. The application may include your spouse and children under 21 years of age. If granted asylum all beneficiaries may receive employment authorization can apply for adjustment of status in the future.
Temporary Protective Status (TPS)
Not currently available for Venezuelan, TPS status is given to certain nationals of designated countries due to the conditions of the country that temporarily prevent them to return safely. Some of these conditions include: ongoing armed conflict (such as civil war), environmental disaster, and other extraordinary temporary condition. TPS beneficiaries are not removable from the U.S., may obtain employment authorization document and travel authorization.
Given Venezuela’s current governmental crisis some Immigration Advocate groups have petitioned to the U.S. government to make Venezuela as a designated country for TPS. We will keep you posted.
Some Venezuelan may also be eligible for non-immigrant visas. These visas may be requested from abroad or as a change of status if the person is currently in the U.S. in status. They include some employment based, investment based, and student visa. Below is an example of the visas which are immediately available:
- L visas: it requires that there is a company in Venezuela and one branch of it in the U.S. or vice-versa; that the beneficiary has been working in the Venezuelan company for at least 1 year in an executive, managerial or specialized knowledge capacity.
- L-1A: transfer of multinational executive or Manager
- L-1B: transfer of employee with specialized knowledge
- O visa: for person that can demonstrate extraordinary ability in the arts, business, science.
- Investor visas: available for Venezuelan who are also citizen of country with a treaty agreement with the U.S. such as Italy and Spain. The investor must invest a substantial amount into a business in the U.S.
- E-2: treaty investors
- E-1 treaty traders
If you have questions about your eligibility, or process you may contact our office.