U.S. Green Card Applicants: Refile Form I-944, Declaration of Self Sufficiency After October 13, 2020 To Avoid Denial

Posted on October 13, 2020
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Public Charge

After a court order from September 11, 2020 reinstating the Public Charge rule, USCIS allows DHS to evaluate green card petitioners before they can be eligible for US permanent residency. However, a follow-up rule that went unannounced is that all applicants registering for permanent residency or adjustment of status after February 24, 2020 will be required to refile their Form I-944, Declaration of Self Sufficiency. Starting today, October 13, 2020 USCIS will reject any I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residency if found to be insufficient.

Related Article: What Is The Wealth Test For U.S. Green Card Applicants

How Does This Affect I-485 Applications Filed/Received Before October 13, 2020?

Now that the public charge rule has been reinstated, USCIS requires:

  • If you have filed Form I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residency or Adjust of Status after Feb 24, 2020 you will be required to file Form I-944, Declaration of Self Sufficiency.
  • If the forms are received at USCIS before October 13, 2020 but had some missing information then the applicant may be issued an RFE. This will give the applicant a chance to furnish the missing content, be it supporting documentation, requisite fees and/or any additional forms.
  • For all I-485 applications received after today, October 13, 2020, USCIS will outright reject the application to register the green card if it is found deficient in any of the requirements pertaining to Form I-944 Declaration of Self Sufficiency.
  • If the forms are sent by commercial courier (for example, UPS, FedEx, or DHL), we will use the date on the courier receipt as the postmark date.
  • USCIS has agreed to not re-adjudicate any applications and petitions that were approved following the issuance of the July 29, 2020, injunction continuing until the date of this notice.

Affidavit of Support

An affidavit of support is legal and binding contract that all American citizens and U.S. nationals have to sign when sponsoring an immigrant visa for a family member to live permanently in the United States. In this agreement, they agree to use their financial resources to support the immigrant.

Affidavit Of Support

Required Supporting Documents for Affidavit of Support

This agreement will now require the sponsoring U.S. citizen to show their

  • credit reports and credit scores, 
  • copies of income tax returns for the last three years, 
  • bank account information

Additional Documents: Revised Forms For New Public Charge Rule

This may be applicable to certain employment based green card sponsors as well.

In order to enforce the sponsor’s financial responsibility, DHS can issue a court order for repayment if a sponsor does not issue reimbursement for any public charge benefits that the applicant accesses.

DHS also intends to eliminate the use and consideration of the Request for Exemption for Intending Immigrant’s Affidavit of Support.

For more details about the Affidavit of Support, check out our page on How To Fill Out An Affidavit Of Support

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