Form I-944 makes its ugly return: DHS to resume implementing Public Charge Rule nationwide
On September 11, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit issued a decision that allows DHS to resume implementing the Public Charge Ground of Inadmissibility final rule in all states. The decision reverses an earlier injunction, issued by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York (SDNY) on July 29, 2020, that prevented DHS from enforcing the rule during a national health emergency. The public charge final rule was implemented on February 24, 2020 and set a requirement to file Form I-944, Declaration of Self-Sufficiency in most cases where immigrants file a Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status.
To implement the new appellate court decision, USCIS will apply the public charge final rule to all applications and petitions postmarked or submitted electronically on or after February 24, 2020, including pending applications and petitions. Any applications and petitions that were approved following the issuance of the July 29, 2020 injunction and before September 22, 2020, will not be re-adjudicated.
The agency’s updated guidance states that, if USCIS receives a Form I-485 that does not have Form I-944 and associated evidence before October 13, 2020, any missing forms and evidence would be subject to request for evidence. This includes cases filed (but not adjudicated) when the injunction was in effect. After October 13, 2020, Forms I-485 will be rejected all the required forms and evidence are not included at the time of filing.
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