Keep up with the latest in immigration law news. 

New Public Charge Rule: February 2020


Evaluating a potential immigrant’s financial strength, English literacy as well as skills is part of the revamped Public Charge assessment that went into effect today. Known as the “public charge” totality of the circumstances test, the rule’s implementation was delayed from Oct. 17, 2019, when it was enjoined by a federal judge. However, that injunction was removed and the law went into effect in all 50 states, including Illinois, today.

As part of the assessment, an immigrant, including those who are immediate relatives of US citizens such as spouses and parents will provide information such as credit reports, bank statements, lists of liabilities and assets in order to prove their self-sufficiency. This is in addition to proof by the sponsor that he or she is able to provide financial support for the immigrants. USCIS will assign points for favorable factors and remove points for such things as lack of ability to speak English.

The change is expected to add considerable time to applications in the US as well as increased scrutiny at Embassies and Consulates where immigrants living abroad apply for permanent visas to live and work in the US.