ALL APPLICANTS FOR A GREEN CARD MUST HAVE A FINANCIAL SPONSOR
WHAT IS A SPONSOR:
A sponsor is someone who has promised the government that they will assist the immigrant financially, to prevent the need for any "means-tested benefit" (usually food stamps). The sponsor is not promising to be any sort of legal guarantor of the immigrants debts, nor is the sponsor responsible for any debts that the immigrant incurs. However, if the sponsor illegally obtains food stamps, for example, the sponsor may be responsible for repaying the government the amount that was illegally taken.
WHO CAN BE A SPONSOR:
Anyone who earns 125% above the poverty level and is a legal permanent resident or US citizen can be a financial sponsor. Often, an applicant's in-laws, friend or boss will sponsor the applicant when the applicant's spouse's income is too low to qualify on his or her own. Click here to see if you earn enough to qualify.
WHAT DOCUMENTS ARE REQUIRED:
All sponsors must provide the following documents and information:
Proof of legal status (US Passport, or US birth certificate and photo ID, or a legal permanent resident card)
A complete copy of the current year's federal tax return, with all schedules, W-2's, and 1099's
The "total income" amount for the 2nd and 3rd tax years
Employment information (name of employer, job title, and start date)
Contact information (phone number, physical address, mailing address, and email address)
HOW LONG MUST A PERSON BE A SPONSOR:
A sponsor's contract will not end until the immgrant becomes a US citizen, abandons his or her status, dies, or completes 40 credits of work to qualify for social security benefits. Divorce does not terminate the sponsor's contract.
WILL OHP BENEFITS AFFECT THE SPONSOR:
No. Oregon Health Plan (Medicare) is a secondary means-tested benefit. The sponsor has only agreed to provide for primary means-tested benefits, which in most cases is only food stamps. A legal permanent resident can obtain OHP benefits and WIC benefits without affecting the sponsor.
WHAT HAPPENS IF THE IMMIGRANT IS ARRESTED OR GETS IN A CAR ACCIDENT?
These events would not affect the sponsor in any way. The sponsor is not liable for any of the applicant's criminal or financial issues.
COULD I BE GARNISHED FOR THE IMMIGRANT'S DEBTS IF I AM THE SPONSOR?
No. The sponsor is not responsible for any debts that the immigrant might incur. This includes all types of debt (credit card, medical, student loan, etc). Even if the immigrant is sued by a creditor or files bankruptcy, the sponsor will not be affected.
WHAT IF THE IMMIGRANT LEAVES THE COUNTRY PERMANENTLY?
If the immigrant abandons his or her immigration status, your sponsorship obligation ends.
DOES THE IMMIGRANT ACTUALLY NEED A SPONSOR?
Yes. The applicant cannot be approved for a green card unless they have a financial sponsor. This silly sponsorship requirement is the most common reason why an immigration case cannot go forward.
For any other questions regarding becoming a financial sponsor, please contact our firm and come in for an initial consultation: (541) 780-6147. A consultation may also be booked online by clicking here.