Form I-944: Everything You Need to Know (’20-’21)

Important Facts You Need to Know

Form I-944, or the Declaration of Self-Sufficiency, is a complex step recently introduced to the green card application process. The form, in short, requires additional information and documentation to be submitted along with a green card application. If this form isn’t submitted correctly or submitted at all, those seeking a green card status may face delayed application processing or even an application rejection.

This article will go over the form and what this means for green card applicants in general terms. However, for detailed information and formal assistance, it’s best to reach out to us for guidance. Please call or contact us if you have any questions.

What is Form I-944?

Form I-944 was introduced in 2020 as an addition to the United States green card application process. The form asks for personal information such as health and financial status. The reason this information is collected is to help the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) officials determine whether an individual is “self-sufficient.”

The USCIS does this to see if the beneficiary is likely become a “public charge”. A public charge is an individual who relies on or uses government assistance or benefits. Those who are deemed likely to become a public charge are more likely to have their green card application denied.

Originally introduced under the Trump administration, Form I-944 is relatively similar to Form I-864 or the Affidavit of Support. The Affidavit of Support takes a look at the financial status of an immigrant’s sponsor (typically a spouse) to ensure they can assume financial responsibility for the green card applicant. However, Form I-944 takes a look at the applicant’s financial status as well.

What Form I-944 changes were passed in September of 2020?

All green card applications moving forward must include Form I-944, and the form must be filled out accurately.

The Department of Homeland Security has re-enacted this form retroactively dating back to February when it was originally suspended. This means individuals who applied for a green card between February 24 and September 11, 2020, will likely have to send in Form I-944 to have their application processed.

Key takeaways about the Form I-944 September 2020 update:

  • Form I-944 is a detailed, complicated form that asks a lot of questions about the green card applicant
  • The form evaluates an applicant’s financial status and asks for supporting documentation like proof of income or assets
  • Applicants who don’t fill out the form correctly (or don’t submit it at all) along with their green card application face delays or rejections
  • The form was temporarily delayed from February through September because of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Starting September 11, 2020, the form is required again
  • Individuals who applied for a green card between February 24 and September 11, 2020, will probably have to fill out the form and send it in

For more information about Form I-944 or help filling out this form, contact Hankins Immigration. We’re available at all hours, no matter where in the world you’re located, and are here to help you every step of the way. Give us a call or send us a message online today.