The public charge rule is a regulation that permits the government to deny an application for a visa, admission or adjustment of status if they are likely to become reliant on government assistance for their basic needs. While the public charge rule has existed for many years, the most recent revisions change the definition of who might qualify as a public charge to include a broader class of people, such as those who do not have private health insurance and cannot pay for their own medical bills. These rule changes have been held up in the courts for months due to lawsuits from activists and immigrants, but those legal blocks have been removed by a narrow 5-4 vote at the Supreme Court, allowing the rule to come into effect.
The new public charge rule will disproportionately impact poor and elderly immigrants, the groups most likely to require public assistance in the form of medical care (such as from Medicare or Medicaid). This means that many of the most vulnerable immigrant groups will have a harder time achieving legal immigration status. It may not be an end to their cases, but it will impact tens or hundreds of thousands of immigrants every year and make it significantly harder for them to legally enter into the United States.
The lawyers at Bretz & Coven, LLP are experienced in handling various immigration matters, including removal defense, asylum applications, visa applications, waivers and more. For more information or to schedule a consultation
at our New York City or New Jersey law office, call (212) 267-2555.