A blog about U.S. immigration matters by Paul Szeto, a former INS attorney and an experienced immigration lawyer. We serve clients in all U.S. states and overseas countries. (All information is not legal advice and is subject to change without prior notice.)

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Monday, March 22, 2021

USCIS Cancelled Proposed Rule on Tougher Affidavit of Support Requirements

The Trump Administration issued a proposed rule on 10/22/2020 to beef up the legal requirements for Affidavit of Support requirements.  The rule has just been withdrawn by the Biden Administration on 03/22/2021.  

All family-based U.S. immigrant visa petitions must be supported by affidavits of suppport (I-864) and related documents.  In other words, anybody who wants to immigrate to the U.S. through a family relationship must ask "sponors" to support their immigrant visa petitions.  These sponsors must be either U.S. citizens or permanent residents.  

By executing an Affidavit of Support (AOS), a U.S. citizen or permanent resident promises to provide the  financial support to an intending immigrant and/or his family members if needed.  Such obligations will last until the immigrant has become a U.S. citizen or has worked for at least 10 years.  

The proposed rule on 10/22/2020 attempted to toughen the AOS legal requirements. For example, it proposed to limit the definition of household income to only income of the sponsor and his/her spouse but not other household family members.  It also proposed to change the definition of household size to include individuals for whom the sponsors have signed AOS or contracts (between household members) but such AOS and contracts have not become effective yet. 

USCIS has effectively withdrawn the proposed changes as of 03/22/2021.  Intending immigrants may now follow the previous instructions and requirements in regards to the Affidavit of Support.  This change was implemented after the Biden Administration's cancellation of the Public Charge Rule, which required immigrants and their sponsors to provide extenstive financial information to support immigrant petitions. 

(Immigration laws and policies change regularly.  If you have any questions regarding this article, please visit www.1visa1.com to schedule legal consultation.) 

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