If you wish to sponsor immigrants to come and live with you in the United States, there are certain financial requirements you must meet. Specifically, you must demonstrate that you have the financial means to support the immigrant and your family, and you must pay certain fees. Here’s what those costs may look like:
What is the Required Minimum Annual Income to Sponsor Immigrants in the United States?
The required minimum annual income to sponsor immigrants in the United States varies depending on the type of immigrant being sponsored. The minimum income requirement is meant to ensure that as a sponsor, you can support the basic material needs of the immigrant and their family, including housing, food, and other necessities.
The specific income requirements for sponsoring immigrants are set by the U.S. government and are based on the Federal Poverty Guidelines, which are updated annually. As of 2023, the minimum income requirements for sponsoring immigrants (other than members of the military) are as follows:
- If you are sponsoring a spouse or child, the minimum necessary income is 125% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines for your household size.
- If you are sponsoring a parent, a friend or anyone else, the minimum necessary income is 125% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines for your household size plus an additional 25% for each person being sponsored.
The specific amounts can be found on the USCIS website at: https://www.uscis.gov/i-864p For example, if you’re sponsoring your spouse and two children, the minimum necessary income would be 125% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines for a household of four. In 2023, that amount is $37,500. For each additional person sponsored or additional household member, an additional $6,425 is added. In 2023, so if the sponsor had a family of four and sponsored an immigrant relative, that would be five in total and the income amount would be $43,925.
Alternately, Sponsors can show assets in order to sponsor an immigrant. The assets need to be five times the required yearly income. For instance, for the $37,500 amount for the family of four above, the necessary assets need to be 5 times $37,000 or $187,500. So if the Sponsor had $200,000 equity in a home, for instance, they would not need to make $37,500 in income per year and could sponsor the immigrant through their assets.
You should keep in mind that as a sponsor, you may need to demonstrate a higher level of income depending on their individual circumstances and the needs of the immigrant you’re sponsoring. For example, if the immigrant has a medical condition that requires expensive treatment, you may need to demonstrate a higher level of income to ensure you can provide the necessary care.
What Fees and Costs are Required for Sponsoring Immigrants in the United States?
In addition to the minimum income requirements, Petitioning sponsors and immigrants are also required to pay certain fees when sponsoring immigrants to come to the US. These fees help cover the cost of processing the immigration application and conducting background checks on the immigrant.
The specific fees required for sponsoring immigrants depend on the type of immigration application being submitted. Some common fees include:
- USCIS Filing Fee
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) filing fee is a mandatory fee for all immigration applications. This fee covers the cost of processing the application and is currently set at $535. You must pay the fee when you submit the immigration application to USCIS.
- Biometric Services Fee
If the immigrant is required to provide biometric information, such as fingerprints or a photograph, then a biometric services fee will also be required. This fee covers the cost of collecting and processing the biometric information and is currently set at $85.
- Visa Application Fee
If the immigrant is applying for a family-based visa, then a visa application fee will also be required. The fee varies depending on the type of visa being applied for and is currently set at $325 for family-based visas.
- Consular Processing Fee
If the immigrant is applying for a family-based visa outside of the United States, then a consular processing fee may also be required. This fee covers the cost of processing the visa application at the U.S. consulate or embassy and is currently set at $265 for family-based visas.
- Adjustment of Status Fee
If the immigrant is already in the United States and is applying for a family-based visa, then an adjustment of status fee may also be required. This fee covers the cost of processing the application and adjusting the immigrant’s status to that of a legal permanent resident. The fee is currently set at $1,225.
- Medical examination cost
Immigrants are required to undergo a medical examination to ensure that they don’t pose a public health risk to the United States. This cost is typically paid by the immigrant or sponsor directly to the medical facility, and varies depending on the location of the medical facility and the specific tests required.
These fees are subject to change and may be updated by the U.S. government at any time. Sponsors should consult the USCIS’s official website for the most up-to-date fee information before submitting their application.
Sponsoring immigrants to come to the United States can be a complex process that involves a number of financial requirements and fees. As a sponsor, you should carefully review the requirements and fees before submitting their application to ensure a successful immigration process.
Contact The Fogle Law Firm, LLC
Need help sponsoring an individual immigrant or immigrant family members? Contact Charlotte Immigration Lawyers, The Fogle Law Firm, LLC today at (704) 405-9060 to learn more, or visit our website. We would be happy to assist you with all your legal immigration needs.