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New Public Charge Ground of Inadmissibility effective December 23

Posted by Michael Kohler | Dec 19, 2022 | 0 Comments

For decades, our immigration laws have provided that an applicant for a green card must establish that they will not become a “public charge” to be admitted to the United States (through overseas processing) or granted permanent residency while in the United States (adjustment of status).  DHS recently issued a final rule that according to a recent announcement, “provides clarity and consistency” on how these provisions will be administered by restoring, “the historical understanding of a ‘public charge' that had been in place for decades before the previous administration began to consider supplemental public health benefits such as Medicaid and nutritional assistance as part of the public charge inadmissibility determination.”

Beginning December 23, 2022, DHS will implement its new rule that considers a “public charge” as one likely to become primarily dependent on the government for subsistence, as demonstrated by either the receipt of public cash assistance for income maintenance or long-term institutionalization at government expense.

In making this determination when considering applications for adjustment of status, USCIS will consider the statutory minimum factors of age; health; family status; assets, resources, and financial status; and education and skills which the applicant provides relevant information about these factors as part of the adjustment application (Form I-485) and the Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record (Form I-693).  USCIS has issued a new Form I-485 that must be submitted on or after December 23, and has indicated that previous editions of this form will be rejected if postmarked after that date.  Additionally, in most cases, an Affidavit of Support, Form I-864, presented by the intending immigrant's petitioning family member will be considered by USCIS in making its determination.

Additional information relating to the “public charge” ground of inadmissibility and the new DHS rule can be found at or you can contact the with additional questions.

About the Author

Michael Kohler

Biography Prior to opening the Law Offices of Michael Kohler, PLLC in 2008, Michael served for 12 years as an attorney for the U.S. government. From 1996-97, Michael served as a Law Clerk for the Immigration Court in New York City. From 1997-2003, Michael was an Assistant District Counsel for th...


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