Do I earn enough income to financially sponsor my spouse’s Green Card Application?

When applying for your husband or wife’s Green Card or Marriage Visa, you may wonder how much you have to be a financial sponsor. This article helps explain the requirements and guidelines so you can determine your eligibility to financially sponsor your spouse.

Determine your total household income:

The Sponsoring spouse is required to also financially sponsor the Beneficiary spouse. USCIS determines that the spouse’s level of income based on the Form I-864p Poverty Guidelines which updates yearly.  Currently, a spouse living in a 2 person household (the two spouses living together) would need to earn a minimum of $20,575 per year. In order to prove income, the sponsor would be required to show their federal income tax return from the previous year along with their W-2 statement if working for an employer.  For a new job, such proof would include recent pay-stubs and a letter from the employer to verify their current yearly salary.

Get a Co-sponsor:

What happens when the sponsor does not earn enough income or is unemployed? In this case, the Sponsoring spouse can ask a co-sponsor to also submit financial sponsorship form on behalf of their Beneficiary spouse. That co-sponsor can be any family or friend so long as they are also a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident.  Their income amount would be determined by individually analyzing their household size and comparing it to Form I-864p.  For example, if the co-sponsor had a wife and one child, then that would be a household size of 3 total plus 1 for the Beneficiary Spouse to equal household size of 4.  Sometimes, the spouse of the co-sponsor may also be working and their combined incomes will be required to meet the income level threshold. In those scenarios, the spouse may also need to sign a household member sponsorship form.

Hire a professional:

This important step of financial sponsorship must be met in any marriage-based green card and marriage visa application. It is important to include the right documentation and complete the forms accurately.  Therefore, hiring an attorney to help with completing these forms, may be well worth it for applicants seeking a smooth process in applying for a green card. For more information please contact us today to schedule a consultation with our Portland Immigration Lawyer.