What is a joint sponsor on the Form I-864 Affidavit of Support?

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If your household income is insufficient to sponsor an intending immigrant on Form I-864, Affidavit of Support, you may enlist the additional support of a joint sponsor.

Who Can Be a Joint Sponsor?

A petitioning sponsor must be a family member, but a joint sponsor doesn’t need to be related. He or she must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident, or U.S. national who is at least 18 years of age, and
  • Have income of at least 125% of the poverty level; and
  • Be domiciled in the United States, or its territories or possessions.

The joint sponsor is held jointly liable with the petitioner for the support of the intending immigrant. He or she does not have to be related to the petitioning sponsor or the intending immigrant.

If the first joint sponsor completes Form I-864 for some rather than all the family members, a second qualifying joint sponsor will be required to sponsor the remaining family members. There may be no more than two joint sponsors. A joint sponsor must be able to meet the income requirements for all the persons he or she is sponsoring without combining resources with the petitioning sponsor or a second joint sponsor. Any dependents applying for an immigrant visa or adjustment of status more than six months after immigration of the principal immigrant must be sponsored by the original petitioner. But they may be sponsored by a different joint sponsor.

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Petitioning Sponsor Remains Responsible

Even if one or more Form I-864s are submitted for an intending immigrant, the petitioning sponsor remains legally accountable for the financial support of the sponsored immigrant along with the joint sponsors. The petitioning sponsor must complete and submit a signed Form I-864 for the intending immigrant even if a joint sponsor participates. The petitioning sponsor must also provide his or her Federal income tax return for the most recent tax year with supporting tax documents unless otherwise not required to file a Federal income tax return for the most recent tax year.

Source: USCIS