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Public Charge Rules

Public Charge Rules


The “Public Charge Rule” implemented by the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) on February 24, 2020 mandates that certain individuals applying for U.S. immigration status are generally inadmissible into the U.S. if they are found likely to become a public charge at any time. Individuals inside or outside the U.S. who seek to either obtain Lawful Permanent Resident status (apply for immigrant visas and “green cards”) or to extend or change nonimmigrant status (temporary visas) must now demonstrate that they have not received public benefits, or have received limited public benefits, with some exceptions.

國土安全部於2020年2月24日實施 “公共負擔規則”規定,某些申請美國移民身份的人,如果發現可能在任何情況下成為公共負擔,通常不被允許在任何時間進入美國。在美國境內或境外尋求獲得合法永久居民身份(申請移民簽證和“綠卡”)擴展或更改非移民身份(臨時簽證)的人,現在必須證明自己沒有獲得公共利益,或者已經獲得一些例外有限的公共利益。

What is considered as Public Charge?

Available guidance notes that public benefits considered for a public charge determination include, but are not limited to, the following: any federal, state, local, or tribal cash assistance for income maintenance. Examples include Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Cash Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Section 8 Housing Assistance & Project-Based Rental Assistance, Public Housing; and Medicaid.



What specific provisions are in the new public charge rules?

• Now, instead of assessing whether an applicant is likely to become primarily dependent on the government for income support, the new rules define a public charge as a person who is likely to receive any number of public benefits for more than an aggregate of 12 months over any 36-month period of time.

• The rules expand the list of publicly-funded programs that immigration officers may consider when deciding whether someone is likely to become a public charge. Under the new rules, federally-funded Medicaid, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps), Section 8 housing assistance and federally subsidized housing will be used as evidence that a green card or visa applicant is inadmissible under the public charge ground.





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