February 2022 Newsletter

We have a couple of interesting developments in immigration policy that just happened last week.

First, there are important changes to the public charge rule, yet again. We have discussed at length the changes to the public charge rule introduced by the Trump administration, and their potentially negative effects for those applying for permanent residency. Last week, the Department of Homeland Security made an announcement that the agency would be returning to the previous, more narrow interpretation of the rule, which means significantly fewer applicants should be affected by it.

“The 2019 public charge rule was not consistent with our nation’s values,” said Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas. “Under this proposed rule, we will return to the historical understanding of the term ‘public charge’ and individuals will not be penalized for choosing to access the health benefits and other supplemental government services available to them.”

Only the below government benefits will remain as qualifiers for the public charge designation. Receiving non-monetary benefits like healthcare, and even the SNAP benefits, will not be included.

  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Cash assistance for income maintenance under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program
  • State, Tribal, territorial, and local cash assistance for income maintenance
  • Long-term institutionalization at government expense

We will continue to keep you up to date with the latest developments in immigration news and policy, so stay tuned to our newsletter and blog. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us!