The petitioners of family-sponsored immigrants must sign affidavits of support (I-864). This requirement also applies to the petitioner of an employment-based petition if the petition is submitted by a relative or by a company in which a relative holds a significant ownership interest.
An affidavit of support permits government agencies to request reimbursement from the petitioner if the beneficiary receives means-test public benefits.
The petitioner’s income must be no less than 125% of the current Federal Poverty Guidelines based on household size. If not, he may include the income and assets of a qualifying household member who has signed form I-864A. The value of any asset is counted as 20% of income. If the petitioner is unable to meet the income requirements, a co-sponsor is required.
Supporting documents for the affidavit of support should include certified income tax returns and W-2s and 1099s.
The petitioner’s obligation to support the beneficiary terminates any of the following events occurs regarding the beneficiary: (1) He naturalizes; (2) He dies; (3) He leaves the U.S. permanently; or (4) He is credited with 40 quarters of work in the U.S. A divorce does not terminate the petitioner’s obligations under the affidavit of support.
Mr. Shusterman is a former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82) with over 35 years of immigration experience. His response to your question is general in nature, as not all the facts are known to him. You should retain an attorney experienced in immigration law to review all the facts in your case in order to receive advice specific to your case. Mr. Shusterman's statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.
Yes, it is okay to have a joint sponsor, but you will still be the primary sponsor. You should contact an immigration attorney as these are not simple forms, unfortunately, and your being unemployed may bring up the issue of your spouse becoming a public charge.
Yes. Although you are currently unemployed, you being the primary sponsor must submit an I-864 affidavit of support with your petition. You can have a co-sponsor and he or she must also submit a separate I-864 and meet the federal income poverty guideline requirements. Consult with an immigration attorney to assist you with the process.
The information provided is intended for informational purposes only and should not substitute for the advice and counsel of an attorney. This information does not constitute legal advice. We ask that you consult with a lawyer, as your facts are unique and because each situation requires analysis from many different perspectives. We cannot be responsible if you rely on information based on this website without the consultation of an attorney.