Yesterday, after 5 years of filings and supplementing and re-papering, my first U visa (crime victim) client received her permanent resident (green) card.
I first met "C" in August 2005. She had been in an abusive relationship for many years. She had been reluctant to seek help because she and her husband were undocumented. Finally, her oldest daughter (then age 11) called the police. The police came, and C was taken to the Emergency Room. Her husband fled to Mexico to avoid being arrested. C had to move to another state and live with her brother's family for over a year because her husband's family was angry that she had reported his abuse. Someone told her she was eligible for a crime victim's visa, so she came to see me.
At the time, the U visa rules had not been published by USCIS (over 5 years after "The Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000" created the nonimmigrant visa for noncitizen victims of crimes). So, we filed an "U Visa Interim Relief Request" in October 2005, and Deferred Action was approved in May 2006.
The U visa rules finally went into effect in October 2007, and we filed a I-918 in November 2007, applying for U status, but we waited to file the I-192 requesting a waiver for her unlawful presence until USCIS allowed a fee waiver. The waiver and U-1 visa were approved in May 2009 with a date valid to May 2010.
In July 2009, after the U Visa adjustment regulations were approved, we filed an application for adjustment of status. Over a year later, C's application was approved, and she received her "green card" (which is actually now green) yesterday.
In the intervening 5 years, C has divorced her abusive husband, moved back to Waco, and remarried. Her two beautiful U.S. citizen daughters are doing well.
When I handed her green card to her, she said, "I'm going to see my mama."
She has not seen her mother in Mexico in over 13 years.