Introduction to VAWA Self-Petitioning

E-learning Course: 

Introduction to VAWA Self-Petitioning

November 8-December 13, 2011


Click here for a more detailed course outline including the dates and times of the five webinars.
Before registering for this training, please make sure that you will be available for these webinars.


$175 per person for CLINIC affiliate agencies

   $190 per person for other nonprofit agency staff

$280 per person for private attorneys and staff


Family-based immigration allows certain USCs and LPRs to petition for their spouses, children, and parents to become permanent residents.  Some spouses, children, and parents who have been abused by USCs or LPRs are eligible to file self-petitions under the Violence Against Women Act and gain permanent residence without the involvement of the abusers.  This four-week course provides an introduction to VAWA self-petitioning, focusing on eligibility, how, when and where to apply, and

how to document VAWA cases.  We will also explore the dynamics of abusive relationships and working with survivors of domestic violence.  Please note that this course assumes some basic knowledge of family-based immigration.

The course requires a time commitment of approximately four hours per week for each of the four weeks of the course.   This time will be spent in different activities, including reading assignments, exercises, and participation in five webinars conducted on consecutive Tuesdays, as listed in the detailed course schedule.  The course will be interactive, with opportunities for online and real-time discussion among students, and between the students and the instructors.  The instructors for this course will be CLINIC attorneys Sarah Bronstein, Kristina Karpinski, and Susan Schreiber. For questions about the course content, please contact Susan Schreiber at

Training Level: Introductory.  This is an introduction to VAWA self-petitioning for the practitioner who already has some exposure to immigration law fundamentals. Basic familiarity with (a) immigration law vocabulary; (b) the ways in which an immigrant may gain legal status; and (c) the concepts of inadmissibility and deportability, is assumed. 

For a detailed course outline, including the dates and times of the required webinars, click here Note that in this e-learning course, successful completion of the course requires participation, not simply registration. Before you register, please carefully consider the dates and times of the scheduled webinars, as well as the additional time required each week for completion of the reading and assignments. Please note that in order to listen to the webinars, you will need either a speaker or a set of headphones for your computer.  There will not be a telephone audio option.

Registration: The training is for the staff of Catholic Charities and other community-based organizations with IRS 501(c)(3) status, and attorneys and legal  staff of private law offices.  If you are registering as staff of a community-based organization, you must fax a copy of your IRS 501(c)(3) letter designating your agency as a nonprofit entity to CLINIC at 415-394-8696 to the attention of Chris Ozaki. Your registration will be confirmed upon receipt of this letter. If you are an attorney, please include your state bar number. Payment is by credit card only. 

Please be sure to register under the correct category and for the correct training. All registration changes or cancellations are subject to an administrative charge of $70.00.  Please note that CLINIC can only issue refunds for an e-learning course until one week prior to the first day of the training.

Please note that we need the full name and a working email address for each individual taking this course.  We will communicate with each registrant via email only, so it is very important that we have the correct name and email address for each registrant.  On the registration form, please provide us the name and email address of the individual who will be taking the course.

Space is limited. The deadline for registration is November 1, or sooner if registration is filled. For registration information contact Andres Abella at  

CLE: CLINIC is authorized by the State Bar of California to provide minimum continuing legal education (MCLE) trainings. E-learning participants are eligible to claim 1.5 hours of MCLE credits per webinar for the webinar component of our e-learning immigration law courses. If you are an attorney licensed in another state, please check with your state bar to determine whether this training qualifies for MCLE credit.


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