Sponsoring green card in US for parents to get tougher
An order proposal of the Trump administration, dealing with public charge, is heavily skewed in favour of the wealthy when it comes to issuing green...
MUMBAI: An order proposal of the Trump administration, dealing with ‘public charge’, is heavily skewed in favour of the wealthy when it comes to issuing green cards to those already in the United States (or in more technical terms, those applying for a change in status).
Contrary to popular perception, several Indians, including parents of those who are now US citizens would be adversely impacted.The proposal makes it mandatory for those filing for a status change to green card to submit the asserted new Form I-944. This allows authorities to collate a plethora of data, ranging from age, English proficiency, financial status, educational qualification, job profile to name a few, all of which enable immigration authorities to determine if the application should be denied on grounds of public charge.
Cyrus Mehta, founding parent of a law firm, views that an affidavit of support, backed by strong income of the sponsor, may help navigate some challenges. For instance, if the parent has a chronic health condition, private insurance coverage or proof that it can be afforded could help in approval of the application.The proposal needs only those individuals (including parents) who are already in the US and applying to change to a green card to file Form I-944. However, Khanna adds, “It is certain that substantially the same form will be developed for people applying for green card from outside US.”
To illustrate, US immigration officials will have discretion to deny green cards to those with income or financial assets below 250% of federal poverty guidelines (FPG, which is $41,150 for a family of two or $84,350 for a six member family).Nearly 25% of recent immigrants from India (who migrated between fiscal years 2014-16) have income below the 250% threshold. The percentage of green cards obtained via family sponsorship is high, which means the draft proposal will dip family immigration. Of the 64,687 green cards allotted to Indians during the fiscal year 2016 (year ended September 30, 2016), 65% were obtained under the family sponsorship route, states Migration Policy Institute (MPI) an independent think tank, in its research report. The wide discretion issued to immigration officials in the draft proposal could alter family immigration flows, it adds.