DHS Will No Longer Pursue Public Charge Rule; Form I-944 Will No Longer Be Required
March 10, 2021
Following President Biden’s Executive Order 14012 “Restoring Faith in Our Legal Immigration System and Strengthening Integration and Inclusion Efforts for New Americans,” the Department of Homeland Security announced on March 9 that it will no longer pursue appellate review of judicial decisions invalidating or enjoining enforcement of the 2019 public charge rule which required all applicants for adjustment of status to complete Form I-944 and answer questions relating to receipt of public benefits when applying for nonimmigrant visa status and visa stamps.
The DHS stated that it will revert to the policy in place before the public charge rule was implemented.
Today, on March 10 the USCIS issued guidance which states:
"On or after March 9, 2021, applicants and petitioners should not provide information required solely by the Public Charge Final Rule. That means that applicants for adjustment of status should not provide the Form I-944, Declaration of Self-Sufficiency, or any evidence or documentation required on that form with their Form I-485. Applicants and petitioners for extension of nonimmigrant stay and change of nonimmigrant status should not provide information related to the receipt of public benefits on Form I-129 (Part 6), Form I-129CW (Part 6), Form I-539 (Part 5), and Form I-539A (Part 3)."
For applications currently pending but not approved, the USCIS will not consider any information provided related to the public charge rule. Any Requests for Evidence (RFE) based solely on qualification under the public charge rule, due on or after March 9, do not require a response.
The USCIS guidance also indicates the agency will be providing further information about the affected forms, and that no forms will be rejected based on whether the questions relating to public charge have been answered or left blank.
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