The individual completing and executing THE AFFIDAVIT OF SUPPORT Form is called a “sponsor.” To qualify as a sponsor the individual must be (i) be age 18 or older, (ii) a U.S. citizen or national, or a lawful permanent resident of the United States, and (iii) live in, hold domicile, in the United States, Washington D.C. , or a U.S. territory or possession. 13
Additionally, the sponsor must be:
- The individual who executed/filed Form I-130 immigration petition, “Petition for Alien Relative” on behalf of the individual seeking permanent resident status.
- The individual who executed/filed Form I-129F, “Petition for Alien Fiancé(e)” on behalf of the foreign national fiancé(e).
- The petitioner of Form I-140, “Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker”, where the petitioner or petitioning company s owner(s) is a relative of the beneficiary and the relative owns 5% or more of the company.
- The parent(s) adopting an orphan.
- An additional person if the original “sponsor” does not meet the financial requirements. Such an individual is called a “joint sponsor.” Where necessary, more than one joint sponsor may be used, however each individual must personally qualify as a “sponsor.” Each joint sponsor is “jointly and severally liable” on the affidavit for any criminal or immigration violation of the immigrant.
What are the Financial Requirements the “Sponsor” Must Meet?
The sponsor must have an income or assets or a combination thereof that meets at least 125% of the stated poverty guidelines. In deference to the sacrifices made by our U.S. armed forces, sponsors on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces need only meet 100% of the stated poverty guidelines. Moreover, all household members of the sponsor are considered when determining whether the sponsor meets the poverty guidelines. Under this provision, members of the household may even include individuals whom the sponsor does not directly support. The following persons are considered household members of the sponsor:
- Individuals related, by blood, marriage or adoption, to the sponsor, such as a spouse and all children. “Children” are considered as persons under age 21, irrespective of parental custody.
- Parent(s) of the sponsor are also included in this determination if residing with the sponsor.
- Any other person listed as a dependent on the sponsor s IRS income tax return.
- Any person for whom the sponsor has previously executed an AFFIDAVIT OF SUPPORT.