S Visa for the U.S.

Updated on Tuesday 19th January 2021

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The S visa for the U.S. is a nonimmigrant visa granted for individuals who have helped a law enforcement agency in the role of an informant or witness. The request for the permanent residence for an S immigrant visa holder can be effectuated only by a federal or state law enforcement agency or an Attorney’s office in the U.S. The members of the S visa holder’s family could also receive the green cards. The green card is also known as the residence permit in USA.

Eligibility for the S visa for the U.S.

The number of S visas issued in the U.S. is limited, currently being limited to 200 S visas per fiscal year. There is an additional number of 50 such visas per fiscal year which are issued for individuals who are able to deliver important and reliable information on terrorist organizations. 

The S visa for the U.S. is usually granted for foreign citizens who are otherwise deportable from or inadmissible in the country. This type of visa is obtained mainly by witnesses or informants who are not safe in their own countries of residence. It is an important advantage also for individuals who may not be able to enter or reside in the U.S. by other means. However, this visa cannot be used to obtain USA citizenship.

Application process for the S visa for the U.S.

The application for the S visa for the U.S. can be effectuated by State, Federal or local law enforcement agencies or a court. 

In order to apply for the S visa for the U.S. on a foreign citizen’s behalf, the sponsoring law enforcement agency has to:

•    complete an I-854 Form;
•    fill in a worksheet arranged by the Office of Enforcement Operations (OEO);
•    complete the additional documentations as stated in the above mentioned forms. Our immigration lawyers in Miami can provide more information on what these documentations may consist of. They can also help you obtain any type of visa, from investment visa for Miami to spouse visa. This visa can be used to acquire USA citizenship.

Restrictions for the S visa holders in the U.S.

S visa holders do have certain restrictions when they live in the U.S. These restrictions are:

•    Reporting to the Attorney General every three months on their location and endeavors;
•    The visa holder must not be convicted of an offence which is carrying a punishment of one or more years of imprisonment;
•    He or she has to agree not to contest a deportation order;
•    Agreeing to any other restrictions on their stay as imposed by the Attorney General.

Please contact our Miami immigration lawyers for further guidance and assistance on this type of visa and on the residence permit in USA.