The Public Charge Rule implemented on February 24, 2020 by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) allows denial of nonimmigrant and immigrant visa applications, adjustment of status applications, extension or change of status applications and green card applications for those applicants who are more likely than not at any time in the future to become a public charge (reliant on US government for livelihood and income support).
According to the February 24 Public Charge Rule, the foreign applicants seeking admission as a nonimmigrant or immigrant to the United States, must show that they can support themselves, are self-sufficient and are not going to depend on public resources to meet their needs at any time in the future. Under the rule, the applicants must be able to show that they can rely on their own capabilities and the resources of their families, sponsors or private organizations and are not likely to seek public benefits.
In order to determine whether an applicant is likely or not to become a public charge at any time, the immigration officers must examine the totality of the applicant’s circumstances and all positive and negative factors related to the applicant’s financial responsibility based on his or her age, health, family status, assets, resources, financial status, education and skills, prospective immigration status and period of stay.
Under the new Public Charge Rule of February 24, 2020, the applicant for adjustment of status to lawful permanent resident (also known as a green card holder) must submit in addition to his or her application and forms, a Declaration of Self-Sufficiency. The Declaration of Self-Sufficiency requires the applicant to disclose his or her financial status, age, health and such disclosures assist the immigration officers to determine whether the applicant is likely to become a public charge and therefore inadmissible on public charge grounds and grant or deny the applicant’s petition.
For the Declaration of Self-Sufficiency, an applicant must provide the following financial disclosure and supporting documents:
- Household Income. Applicant must provide annual gross income from the most recent federal income tax return, gross income of their household members as stated in the member’s most recent federal income tax return. In addition, the applicant must also provide IRS transcript of the federal income tax return and of the household members.
- Assets. The applicant must provide information of all assets that can converted into cash within 12 months, for assets held in the US or outside the US. If an applicant includes with the application, the net value of his or her home, then he or she must also provide proof of ownership, evidence of any mortgage or liens on the property and a recent appraisal conducted by a licensed appraiser. Additionally, if an applicant lists checking or savings accounts then he or she must provide bank statements for the accounts the most recent 12 months.
- Additional Income. The applicant must state any additional income that he or she receives on a continuing basis that was not included in the tax return or the tax return of the household members.
Currently, there is uncertainty as to whether receipt of relief granted under the CARES Act due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic must be disclosed on the Declaration of Self-Sufficiency.
At Malescu Law, our US immigration attorneys in Miami, Florida can assist you with preparation and filing of your visa application, change or extension of status application, adjustment of status application, green card application and Declaration of Self-Sufficiency, among others, and further advise you on any new rules and regulations related to required disclosures on the Declaration of Self-Sufficiency and US immigration laws. Contact now our experienced immigration lawyers in Miami, Florida.
Malescu Law P.A. – Business & Immigration Lawyers