Cases & Deals

Pro Bono client receives T-Visa

Clients X. V.

Jessica Sawyer (Los Angeles), Haley McIntosh (Los Angeles), and Smitha Prabhuswamy (a former associate in San Diego) assisted client X.V., a victim of human trafficking, in her successful application for a T-Visa, which allows certain victims of human trafficking and their immediate family members to remain and work temporarily in the United States if they agree to assist law enforcement in testifying against the perpetrators.

Ms. V came to Jones Day through a new partnership with the Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking ("CAST"). Ms. V, a native of Mexico, was brought to Los Angeles as a teenager by a woman who forced her into domestic servitude and abused her mentally and physically for months before she was able to escape.

Under the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act, victims like Ms. V are eligible for T Nonimmigrant Status, enabling them to remain in the United States legally and to adjust their status to legal residency after a period of three years. Unfortunately, many victims of human trafficking are unaware of their eligibility and are afraid to reach out for assistance after their experiences. CAST provides outreach and a variety of social and legal services for trafficking victims, and relies on partnerships with law firms in order to provide pro bono legal advocacy for these clients.

Jones Day assisted Ms. V with the lengthy and exacting application process. Ms. V's and her husband's applications were approved by USCIS in May, and they, along with their new daughter, are extremely pleased to be on the path to U.S. residency.