U Visa Coordination

Wage and Hour Division
U.S. Department of Labor
U Visa Basics
Wage and Hour U Visa certification process
and protocols
Allows victims of certain crimes (QCAs) to remain in the
U.S. if they are willing to assist with the detection,
investigation, or prosecution of those crimes
Helps law enforcement agencies enforce the law and
better serve crime victims
U Visa application must include certification from a law
enforcement agency
◦ DHS regulations identify WHD as a certifying law enforcement
USCIS can grant up to 10,000 U Visas each year
authorizing the holder to remain in the United States for
up to four years
Approved or denied by USCIS
For Workers
 Grants petitioner nonimmigrant status
Allows petitioner to
remain in the U.S. for
up to 4 years
Receive work
authorization (if
application is granted)
For Government
 Assists the government
in investigating and
prosecuting crimes
Promotes the
prevention of criminal
Encourages victims to
come forward about
criminal activities
USCIS requirements
◦ Victim of a QCA
◦ Physical or mental abuse as
a result of a QCA
◦ Possess information about
that QCA
◦ Must be helpful or is likely
to be helpful in the
investigation of that QCA
◦ QCA is a violation of U.S.
law or occurred in the U.S.
WHD requirements
◦ Allegation of one of the 5
QCAs for which WHD will
consider certification
◦ The alleged QCA arises in
the context of a work
environment or an
employment relationship
◦ There is a related, credible
allegation of a violation of
a law WHD enforces
◦ Personal statement
DOL is a U Visa certifying law enforcement
The Secretary delegated her authority to
certify U Visas to WHD
WHD does not have authority to grant or deny
U Visas
Involuntary Servitude
Witness Tampering
Obstruction of Justice
Involuntary Servitude
Human trafficking
Labor trafficking involves the recruitment,
harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining
of a person for labor or services through the use of
force, fraud, or coercion, for the purpose of
subjecting the individual to labor prohibited by
federal anti-trafficking/compelled labor laws (such
as involuntary servitude, forced labor, or peonage)
Sex trafficking involves a commercial sex act that is
induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which
the person induced to perform the act is under 18
Compelling a person to work by the use of
force, the threat of force, or the use of or
threat of legal coercion such as arrest,
deportation, or imprisonment.
Involuntary servitude that is compelled in part
by indebtedness.
Federal law prohibits holding or returning any
person to a condition of peonage.
Using or attempting to use physical force,
threats, harassment, intimidation, improper
persuasion, or misleading conduct in order to
influence, delay, or prevent someone from
providing testimony or information in an
official proceeding
An “official proceeding” can include a DOL
investigation as well as administrative
The obstruction of proceedings before federal
courts, agencies, and committees, as well as
the destruction, alteration, or falsification of
records in federal investigations
Role of U-Visa Coordinator
Role of SOL
Role of District Office
Certification requests originate
◦ During or after DOL workplace investigation
◦ U-Visa petitioner contacts DOL with allegation of a
violation of a law that DOL enforces and a related
delegated authority to its
Regional Administrators
• Each Regional Administrator is
supported by one U Visa Coordinator
Regardless of how or when the U Visa request
is received by WHD, all requests go to the U
Visa coordinator (UVC)
UVC manages all aspects of the U Visa
UVC remains in communication with DO
regarding status of U Visa request and any
investigation of related WHD violation
UVC makes preliminary determination
whether to recommend certification based
◦ Interview with petitioner
◦ Any supplemental information provided by
petitioner or advocate on behalf of petitioner
◦ Any information, if available, detected by WHD
during course of related WHD investigation
Petitioner interview:
◦ In most cases, the UVC will need to interview the
◦ Interview is necessary to determine whether legal
requirements for certification are met
UVC must consider whether the following required
elements are met:
◦ The QCA arises in the context of an employment
relationship or work environment and there is a related,
credible allegation of a violation of a law that DOL enforces;
◦ The petitioner has alleged that he or she is a victim of one
of the 5 QCAs: involuntary servitude, peonage, trafficking,
obstruction of justice, or witness tampering;
◦ The petitioner has demonstrated that he or she has been, is
being, or is likely to be cooperative with law enforcement
officials in any investigation or prosecution of the QCA.
The following factors should also be
◦ Another law enforcement agency is already
engaged in the investigation or prosecution of
the QCA or would be in a better position to
certify the Supplement B form based on the facts
presented; and
◦ Certification of the Supplement B form would
assist the Department’s investigation of a
violation of a law that it enforces.
WHD will refer the QCA to the appropriate
law enforcement agency
◦ Ensure that the safety of the petitioner, the
petitioner’s family, and any other possible victims
are taken into account
Contact advocacy and social services
organizations as feasible and appropriate
If “no”, WHD will notify petitioner immediately
of determination
◦ Provide information to petitioner about other
certifying agencies
If “yes”, WHD will take next steps towards
◦ Draft narrative statement that will provide required
information for the I-918 Supplement B form
◦ Provide narrative statement to the Solicitor’s Office for
their advice on whether to recommend certification
How the case came to DOL’s attention, and the
current status of the WH complaint.
A summary of the information provided by the
petitioner during the interview and any
supplemental information provided.
An assessment of the helpfulness of the petitioner
in detecting the QCA and investigating the
workplace violation claim, as well as an assessment
as to whether the individual is likely to be helpful
in any future investigation or prosecution of the
Whether the QCA has been or will be
referred to the appropriate law enforcement
Information about any known injury to the
petitioner, and whether any of the
petitioner’s family members are believed to
have been involved in the QCA.
Reviews the case narrative and advises the
UVC as to whether the legal requirements
are met
Conducts the necessary legal research
concerning the related QCAs
If final determination is to certify,
completes the Supplement B form
After receiving advice from the Solicitor’s
Office, the UVC makes a final determination
about recommendation.
If no, notify petitioner immediately and
provide information about other certifying
If yes, provide recommendation to the
Regional Administrator whether to certify
Supplement B of Form I-918
Has final decision-making authority on
whether to certify
Final decision is discretionary
Timely review of the petitioner’s allegations
and the certification of a U Visa petition
3 months to review single U Visa certification
request and make a determination as to
whether or not to certify

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