USCIS Policy Manual Chapter 5 – Requests to Expedite Applications or Petitions (October 1, 2021) [pdf]

USCIS issued updated criteria for expediting adjudication of applications and petitions with its most recent update October 1, 2021. This policy can be helpful in cases of immigrant crime victims with pending VAWA self-petitions, U visa or T visa cases when the victim is detained or there is case pending before an immigration judge in which there is a date for a merits hearing set and the victim needs to have their VAWA, T or U visa case adjudication expedited so as to have a decision on that case before the victim has to appear in immigration court for a merits hearing. Importantly the new expedite criteria explicitly lists safety of the victim due to VAWA confidentiality violations as an emergency or urgent humanitarian basis for an expedite requests. Requests to expedite can be filed by attorneys for the victim including when ICE is also authorized to file expedite requests for victims in removal proceedings and with final orders of removal.