Author: Sarah Collins

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DHS Public Charge Updates

Earlier this year, the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) rule on public charge inadmissibility went into effect, requiring the use of Form I-944 Declaration of Self-Sufficiency for adjustment of status applicants in deciding whether the applicant is inadmissible based on public charge grounds. Subsequently, a U.S. District Court imposed a nationwide injunction halting implementation of the public charge rule during the COVID-19 national health emergency. The result of the injunction was that applicants for adjustment of status to permanent residence were not required to submit the Form I-944.

On August 12, 2020, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals limited the scope of the injunction to just three states- New York, Connecticut, and Vermont. This means that the government may resume implementation of the public charge inadmissibility rule everywhere outside of those states, which includes requiring adjustment of status applicants to submit Form I-944. We had been hoping for some clarification from USCIS subsequent to the Court of Appeals’ decision. Unfortunately, clarification has not come and we don’t know if it will.

It is difficult to know how to advise clients when many questions remain. However, we believe the safest approach is for applicants residing in states other than New York, Connecticut, and Vermont to prepare and file the I-944 with adjustment of status applications.

The attorneys at Curray York & Associates will continue to closely monitor the situation and provide updates when possible.