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Pro Bono Spotlight: Netflix Sponsors DACA Fees for Survivor

LAFLA is grateful to our pro bono partners, who go above and beyond to support clients in any way they can. Recently, our partners at Netflix sponsored our client Thalia in applying for immigration status while she recovered from a horrific incident of domestic violence.

When Thalia was a child, she and her family left her home in Mexico to start a life in the U.S. Thalia, now 22, has maintained her U.S. residency through DACA, allowing her to work to help support her young son, a U.S. citizen.

But everything changed when one night, as she slept, Thalia’s boyfriend attacked her with a knife, nearly killing her. Her extensive injuries left her unable to work, and she became dependent on family, friends, and the limited benefits available to DACA recipients as she tried to heal.

To obtain better, necessary, benefits and ensure she could remain in the U.S. with her son, LAFLA attorney Erin Gunter advised Thalia to apply for a U-Visa—a type of visa specially designed for victims of crime and abuse. With LAFLA’s help, Thalia filed her U-Visa application, and, upon receipt of her application, she became eligible for additional financial benefits through CalWORKS and CalFresh. In the meantime, however, Thalia still needed the temporary citizenship protections provided by DACA but could not afford the $500 fee to renew her status—putting her at risk of deportation and separation from her son.

Fortunately, pro bono advocate Josh Epport led Netflix in stepping in to help by paying Thalia’s DACA renewal fee in full. Now, Thalia can remain eligible for additional benefits, and safely seek work when she’s ready. Until then, she continues to heal safely at home with her son.

You don’t have to be a big company like Netflix to make a difference—anyone can chip in to change the lives of our clients. Just $500 stood between Thalia and the ability to live freely and safely in the U.S. No matter how much you can contribute, we’re so grateful for your support.

Are you interested in volunteering with LAFLA as an individual or with your company? Contact LAFLA at probono@lafla.org.

Do you need help with immigration access or domestic violence issues? Contact us at 800-399-4529 or apply for help.