Fee Waivers: The Elimination of Means-Tested Benefits

Fee Waivers: The Elimination of Means-Tested Benefits
Beginning on December 2, 2019, the eligibility criteria for filing Form I-912 Request for Fee Waiver will change. Immigrants previously could qualify for a fee waiver based upon one of three criteria listed below:
Household is currently receiving means-tested benefits Household income is at or below 150 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines Financial Hardship
The new policy eliminates waiver eligibility for immigrants using the means-tested benefits, i.e, those receiving public benefits such as Food Stamps, Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Child Health Insurance Program (CHIP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), among others. As a result, fewer immigrants will be able to afford to pay the application fees. They may also encounter challenges in obtaining the fee waiver because it will be more difficult to prove their inability to pay the fees, which in turn means they will need to hire attorneys to assist them because the two remaining criteria are document intensive.
There will be new required supporting evidence to prove household income at or below 150 percent, for example, by having to include tax transcripts instead of copies of tax returns once the final rule takes effect.
For more information about this new rule, please contact our office for a free telephone consultation (15 minute) at 248-557-3645.
Sevahn Merian
Associate Attorney, Immigration Law Department
The Law Offices of Joumana Kayrouz, PLLC
phone: (248) 557-3645 fax: (248) 200-0645 email: smerian@joumanakayrouz.com
1000 Town Center, Suite 800 Southfield, MI 48075

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