Preparing your Form I-944? Get the Form I-944 supporting documents checklist, useful tips how to assemble your application and learn who’s exempt from filing Form I-944 in SelfLawyer’s guide.

The Declaration of Self-Sufficiency, or Form I-944, is a new form issued by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), which will help the U.S. government assess the financial credibility of an applicant and check whether he/she is inadmissible based on the public charge ground.

According to the USCIS, after Feb 24, 2020, any applicant applying for a permanent residency in the U.S., using the Adjustment of Status procedure, is required to file Form I-944 along with it.

The list of applicants exempt from filing Form I-944 can be found here.

We have covered detailed guides encompassing everything. All the details you need to know about the Declaration of Self Sufficiency, right from a complete in-depth analysis to each and every instruction you need to follow to fill out the form can be found here:

Here, we will cover a detailed checklist of all the supporting documents you need to submit along with your Form I-944. A basic overview of these documents are as follows:

  • Proof of income
  • Certified public benefit(s) received (if any)
  • Documentation of family members
  • IRS Transcript(s)
  • Social security statements if you and your household members, if required
  • Veteran’s benefits (if applicable)
  • Proof of non taxable income
  • Proof of assets, like mortgages or loans
  • Proof of liabilities and debts 
  • Proof of bankruptcy, if any
  • Copy of your credit report from any of the three main U.S. credit agencies
  • Health insurance coverage
  • Most recent copy of IRS Form 1095-B or 1095-C, if available
  • All medical records
  • Evidence of employment for last 5 years
  • Copy of educational degrees
  • Documentation of occupational skills, if any
  • Documentation confirming English proficiency
  • Documentation for retired applicants
  • Legal guardianship court order, if required

What is Form I-944?

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Form I-944, Declaration of Self-Sufficiency is a new form issued by the USCIS, which must be submitted along with the Form I-485, Adjustment of Status (if the applicant files I-485).

It is a new addition to the green card application process.

It is used by the green card applicants to demonstrate that he or she is not inadmissible based on the ‘public charge ground.

Through this form, the USCIS collects details about you and your financial status. This means that the government of the U.S. can deny your green card application, should you become a public charge anytime in future.

Who Should Submit this Form?

You must file this form if you are filing the Form I-485, Adjustment of Status and you are subject to the public charge ground of inadmissibility:

  • If you are a foreign-born person submitting an adjustment of status application to USCIS from within the US, then you must fill out Form I-944.
  • However, if you’re applying from outside the United States via consular processing, you are not required to file this Form. However, applicants may be asked to present a completed DS-5540, Public Charge Questionnaire, at their visa interview.

If you are exempted from the public charge ground of inadmissibility, you do not need to file Form I-944. To see the full list of applicants who are exempt from filing Form I-944, visit this page.

Form I-944 Supporting Documents Checklist

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The Declaration of Self-Sufficiency is a lengthy form, with lots of details you need to provide. 

Each of its 9 sections requires submission of a large number of supporting documents.

If you do not attach all required documents with your Form I-944, it can result in denial of your green card application.

You must be very careful and double check if you have attached all the documents required with your Form I-944.

Make sure you don’t send any original documents unless specifically requested in the instructions or applicable regulations. 

Provide only photocopies of supporting documents.

If you submit any documents (copies or original documents, if requested) in a foreign language, you must include a full English translation along with a certification from the translator verifying:

  • That the translation is complete and accurate,
  • That they are competent to translate from the foreign language to English.
  • Translator’s contact phone number and email
  • Translator’s signature and date of signature

Proof of Income

income

  • IRS Transcript(s) of your federal income tax returns for the last 3 years.
  • IRS Transcript(s) of household members for the most recent federal tax return.
  • In case of unavailability of tax returns, you can submit copies of W-2s for the last 3 years or if W-2s are not available, pay stubs.
  • Social Security Statement providing history or annual income for yourself or household member(s) (if applicable)

Non-taxable income like:

  • Consistent and regular support from adult children, parents, dependents, or other people living in the household
  • Unemployment benefit records
  • Veteran’s disability benefits

Proof of Assets

If your gross household income is less than 125% of Federal Poverty Guidelines, you can use assets/resources held by you or your household members, whether inside OR outside the United States, that can be readily converted into cash within 12 months.

The documentation in such a case include:

Home/Property/Real estate Ownership

  • Document showing you/your household member’s ownership of property, like the ‘title document
  • A recent appraisal by a licensed appraiser
  • Evidence of any mortgages or loans secured against the home

Automobile (vehicle) Ownership

  • Document showing you/your household member’s ownership of vehicle, like ‘title document’
  • Documentation of any loan(s) secured on the vehicle, if applicable.

Other:

  • Proof of ownership for bank accounts, stocks, retirement accounts, and financial instruments and the instrument’s cash value
  • Any other evidence of substantial assets that can be easily converted into cash.

Documentation of Liabilities and Debts

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Evidence for applicant’s each debt or liability, such as mortgages, car loans, unpaid taxes or child support, or credit cards. These documents include:

  • Documentation evidencing the mortgage
  • Documentation evidencing the car loan(s)
  • A court order or other document showing any unpaid child and/or spousal support
  • Documentation showing any unpaid taxes
  • Credit card statements for all credit cards covering the last 6 months prior to filing.
  • Loan statements of the last 6 months prior to filing.
  • Documentation showing any liens issued against you and/or property you own
  • Loan statements issued to you by the lending entity covering the last 6 months prior to filing.
  • A copy of your credit report from any of the three main U.S. credit agencies (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion).
  • In case you do not have a credit report, you must submit documentation supporting it, like a signed letter from the credit bureau(s), and any evidence of continued payments of bills.
  • Evidence of bankruptcy resolution, like court papers or other documentation showing that any prior bankruptcies have been fully resolved.

Public Benefits

  • In case you have ever received or are certified to receive any kind of public benefit(s), then provide all letter(s), notice(s), certification(s), or other agency documents related to it.
  • If you’ve been disenrolled from public benefit or withdrawn, documents demonstrating confirmation of such disenrollment.

Health Insurance

  • If you have health insurance coverage, then submit the health insurance card issued with your name and the effective and expiration dates.

You must also submit any one of these documents:

  • A full copy of a health insurance policy, detailing type of coverage and individuals covered
  • A letter from an insurance company confirming your enrollment and details of the type of coverage
  • Copy of the most recent IRS Form 1095-B (if available), as an evidence of  renewal of coverage for the current year

Details of insurance tax credits:

  • A transcript copy of IRS Form 8963 (Report of Health Insurance Provider Information)
  • A transcript copy of IRS Form 8962 (Premium Tax Credit)
  • A copy of Form 1095-A (Health Insurance Marketplace Statement)

If you are enrolled in health insurance but your coverage hasn’t started:

  • Evidence from insurance company that you have enrolled in or have a future enrollment date for a health insurance plan
  • This letter must include terms, type of coverage, state that you are the individual covered under the prospective policy and when the date coverage starts

Medical Records

  • All medical records, or
  • Medical/mental health documentation, or
  • Other documentation regarding your health and condition
  • Submit documentation to outweigh any negative effect related to your medical condition

Education and Skills

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  • Documentation showing history of employment for the last 5 years

Copy of the following educational degrees obtained, if applicable

  • High school diploma
  • Bachelor’s degree(s)/transcripts, and
  • Other higher education degree(s)/transcripts

Copy of documentation of any occupational skills, like:

  • Workforce skills and training, like participating in vocational rehabilitation programs
  • Licenses for specific occupations or professions
  • Certificates documenting apprenticeships in skilled trades or professions

Documents proving English proficiency

  • Language certifications certificates
  • Documentation of any language or literacy classes taken or currently taking
  • Native english speakers must provide high school diplomas and college degrees/transcripts showing that the native language was studied for credit.

Retired Applicants and Caretakers

For retired applicants, if they haven’t already submitted:

  • Documentation of income from pensions, social security, or other retirement benefits/accounts must be attached with the application.

In case you’re a primary caretaker, these are the documents you need to provide:

  • Legal guardianship court order
  • Individual  you provide care for must reside in your household
  • Age of the person being cared for
  • A letter by the individual’s doctor indicating their medical condition or copies of their medical record.

Let SelfLawyer Prepare Your Form I-944

Preparing and filing the Form I-944 is crucial for timely acceptance and approval of your green card application.

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Related links:

How to Fill out Form I-944, Declaration of Self Sufficiency [2020 Guide]

I-944 Form, Declaration of Self-Sufficiency [2020 Guide]

Public Charge Rule – Complete Guide [2020]

Affidavit of Support (Form I-864) Checklist [2020]

How to Fill Out Affidavit of Support, Form I-864 [2020 version]

Affidavit of Support, Form I-864 – Complete Guide [2020]