Immigration Issues/I-864 issues


Hi, I'm a postdoc researcher at a US university on a J-1 visa that expires at the end of May 2013. I just got married to my US citizen fiancee who I've been dating for the last 2.5 years. We are also expecting our first child together in March.

I'm concerned about the issue of sponsorship when we apply for my green card. We live in the same apartment and I pay most of the bills. My wife was in grad school when we met so doesn't have a history of earnings in recent years. My wife now works and makes around the amount of money that the USCIS requires ($18,913 per year for two people). I have some savings that I can put in our joint account to make sure she's over the line. My concern is when do they count your earnings? At the time of application or the time of the interview some months later? Right now I am making a good salary and together we are well above the minimum. But if they ask us again in the spring, I'll be looking for a new job and the form says I can't count income from a different employer. Plus, in February, my wife will have to stop work to give birth, so if we were called for interview then she could be making nothing at all. Is this going to be a problem for our application?

Two further questions: Can I submit my previous tax returns to show that, as a couple, we have consistently made more than the required amount? Also, will the required amount go up if the baby is born before the green card is granted?

Thanks for your help,

Dear Larry:
Your concern is justified. For purposes of affidavit of support (I-864) USCIS looks into previous year taxes and current income and assets.  To my understanding, you should be fine with your current income, your spouses current income, and last years tax.  Also, I would suggest that you show and include value of assets (yours and your spouses)

You have the option to submit last three years taxes - but for the petitioner. Anyways, in the form (I-864) you may include you income as earning beneficiary and compensate the difference if any.  

However, I would recommend that you hire or consult an experienced immigration attorney for proper processing of the case without any problems. You may send your documents to us for review for a nominal fee and we will be more than happy to assist you in this regard.  

also, just to remind - if you are subject to 2 year home residency requirement you may not submit the green card application (I-485) until you get your waiver approved.  

Best wishes,  

Immigration Issues

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Questions regarding Immigration to United States, including Removal/Deportation Proceedings, Asylum; Green Card through Family (Fiance/ee Visa, Spouse, Children, Parents, Siblings); Green Card through Employment (Labor Certification - PERM, Extra Ordinary Ability - EB1, Religious/Entrepreneur - EB4/EB5); Non-Immigrant Visas - H1B, L1, F & M, J1, J1 waiver, Humanitarian relief (Cancellation of Removal, Prosecutorial Discretion, TPS, Dream Act); Hardship Waiver (I-601/212) etc., are welcome.


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LL.M - Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, NY. LL.B - Campus Law Center, University of Delhi, New Delhi.

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