In order to create new forms and procedures to help put its new public charge rule into effect, the State Department has decided to postpone its decision to put the public charge rule into effect. Hence, unless there are further updates from the State Department, visa applications will not undergo the more increased or careful examination of health, finances and other personal factors that the new rule will require.

The public charge regulation by the State Department, formerly meant to be enforced on October 15, would require stricter standards for visa applicants in order to ensure and ascertain that applicants are not liable to become public charges of the U.S. Government. The public charge rule would also require consular officers to examine visa applications with a “totality of circumstances” test, which involves a careful review of income, household size, applicant’s age, finances, health, possible public benefits applicants may receive, education and skills. 

Impact of this rule postponement on visa applicants

While visa applicants will not have to submit comprehensive and in-depth public charge information for visa applications for now, as a result of the State Department’s postponement of the regulation, starting November 3, visa applicants are still required to prove that they will be able to fully finance their health insurance within 30 days of entry into the US. 

Posted in: Immigration