The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) released a News Alert (12/29/15) stating that the statutory maximum of 10,000 U nonimmigrant petitions (U Visas) for FY2016 has been reached. This is the 7th year in a row that this maximum cap has been reached before the end of the fiscal year. USCIS will continue to accept U visa petitions! USCIS will process them in the order received at the beginning of FY2017, which starts October 1, 2016, at that point the U Visa cap of 10,000 will open again.
The U nonimmigrant status (U Visa) is set aside for victims of crimes who have suffered substantial mental or physical abuse and are willing to assist law enforcement and government officials in the investigation or prosecution of the criminal activity. Note that a U-Visa petition requires certification of assistance from law enforcement.
Source of Information:
USCIS.gov, 12/29/15, News Alert:
USCIS Approves 10,000 U Visas for 7th Straight Fiscal Year
USCIS.gov, 11/30/15, Web Page:
Victims of Criminal Activity: U Nonimmigrant Status
USCIS.gov, 8/25/14, Web Page:
Resources for Victims of Human Trafficking & Other Crimes