If an I-864 sponsor’s income does not meet the minimum federal poverty guidelines, he or she may be able to submit the value of assets to make up the difference. (I-864EZ sponsors may not use assets.) In other words, you should only add assets to Form I-864 if you cannot meet the requirements based on income.
CitizenPath can help you prepare Form I-864 based on your income. Our online services do not support adding assets at this time. If you do not have sufficient income, we recommend adding a household member or joint sponsor. If your only option is to utilize assets, we recommend using an experienced immigration attorney.
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Required Cash Value of Assets
The total net value of assets, less liens and liabilities against them, must equal five times the difference between the sponsor’s income and 125 percent of the poverty level for the household size.
Sponsors of spouses and children of U.S. citizens must only prove assets valued at three times the difference between the poverty guidelines and actual household income.
Sponsors of orphans who will acquire citizenship after admission to the United States must only prove assets equal to the difference between the poverty guidelines and actual household income.
For example, a sponsor has an income of $20,000. However, the necessary minimum income for his household size is $30,000. There is a shortfall of $10,000. He or she may use assets to make up this difference. If sponsoring a spouse, the assets must value at least $30,000 (3 times the shortfall). For most other intending immigrants, the assets must value $50,000 (5 times the shortfall).
Assets Which May be Used
Financial sponsors may use most liquid assets. That means the assets are convertible into cash within one year and without considerable hardship or financial loss to the sponsor and his/her family. Examples of assets easily convertible to cash are savings, stocks, bonds and property. Sponsors may include the value of their home. They may not include the value of their automobile, unless they can show they have more than one and the primary automobile is not included as an asset. The sponsor may only use U.S. assets.
The intending immigrant can potentially add foreign assets and file a Form I-864A to have his or her assets included in the minimum income level calculations. The foreign assets must meet the following requirements:
- The assets must be convertible to cash within 12 months.
- The applicant must show that the assets can be removed from the country where they are located. Many countries have limits on cash or liquid assets that can removed from the country.
- The net value of assets must be at least five times the difference between the sponsor’s income and 125 percent of the poverty guideline for the household size.
RECOMMENDED: Using a Relative’s Income on Form I-864