Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence

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Domestic Violence: Finding Safety and Support

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Immigrant Victims

An immigrant is someone who has moved to the United States from another country. The terms “documented” and “undocumented” refer to documents (papers) which show the legal status one has in the United States. Undocumented immigrants are sometimes labeled as “illegal aliens”– this is generally considered an offensive term. Domestic violence victims who are also immigrants face greater challenges when they are undocumented and controlled by an abusive spouse.

Regardless of immigration status, you have a right to safety.

The agency that handles immigration is the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). As an immigrant victim of domestic violence, you should never call USCIS

directly. You should get an attorney who specializes in immigration and domestic violence to assist you. Your attorney can help you contact USCIS if necessary. Contact your domestic violence program to find an attorney.

You have the right to live free from violence whether you are documented or undocumented.

For more information, visit the Asista website: More resources are listed in the back of this booklet.