What’s the Minimum Income For Sponsoring an Immigrant?
To answer this question, it’s important to discuss the US government’s approach on family-based immigration. Whether you are living in Texas or any other state and wish to sponsor a relative to come to America, there are conditions that must be met.
New immigrants are expected to have adequate financial backup to be able to live in America without requiring government assistance. Alternatively, they should have a sponsor who can adequately support them or refund the state should the government offer any assistance reserved to US citizens and other qualified groups.
To ensure new immigrants have the financial support needed, part of the paperwork required is the USCIS Form I-864. The form contains a promise made by a US sponsor that they will financially support the immigrant in question if they aren’t able to support themselves or their family. The form also contains a promise by a sponsor to pay the US government back if the immigrant in question receives welfare (need-based public support).
Besides Form I-864, new immigrants are assessed in totality to see if their personal circumstances, job skills, educational background, health insurance coverage, etc., makes them suitable candidates. However, the most important prerequisite for an immigrant is to have a relative in America with a certain level of financial might.
What Is The Minimum Income To Sponsor An Immigrant In 2021?
As per the USCIS poverty guidelines, a sponsor must have an income/assets that are 125% or more of the US federal poverty guideline levels applicable to the respective family size that will be living in the sponsor’s home.
Individuals on active duty in the army who are petitioning for a child or spouse should have income/assets that are at least 100% of the US federal poverty guidelines.
As of April 2021 USCIS guidelines, a US army sponsor with a household size of two needs at least $17,420 to sponsor a spouse or child. A sponsor with a household size of two who isn’t a member of the US armed forces needs at least $21,775 to sponsor. The limits keep increasing as the household size increases.
It’s worth noting that the above minimum income requirement applies to all states apart from Alaska and Hawaii. For the exact minimum income requirements, check the USCIS website.
Other Eligibility Requirements for Financial Sponsors
Having an income above the set limits isn’t enough to sponsor someone to the US. Sponsors must be adults (18 years and above). They should also be permanent residents (green card holders) or American citizens. Lastly, they must be living (be domiciled) in America.
The domicile requirement complicates issues for sponsors living overseas. If you have American citizenship and you meet some abroad who you wish to marry, the domicile requirement can complicate matters. You can get a green card for a fiancé(e) by filing Form I-864 and showing US immigration authorities that you temporarily live overseas and don’t plan to give up US domicile. This scenario is easier for sponsors working overseas for the American government, American company or those doing missionary work.