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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawUS Immigration LawAmerican Marriage Visas: Is the I-864 Legally Binding?

American Marriage Visas: Is the I-864 Legally Binding?

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing the I-864 and the legally binding nature thereof, associated with US Marriage Visas. So we are talking about the CR-1 the IR-1, the K-3, some of the preference categories associated with those married to lawful permanent residents in the United States. We are talking about all these types of visas in this video and we are specifically talking about the I-864 and the legally binding nature thereof.

For those American citizens watching this video, we are trying to decipher some information about how affidavits of support work and who are currently debating whether or not to seek a K-1 fiancée visa or a US marriage visa. I would urge you to check out another video that was made around the same time as we made this video concerning the I-134 Affidavit of Support and the legally binding nature thereof. The thing that should be taken away from either of these videos is notwithstanding the legally binding nature of the affidavit itself, lying or misrepresenting oneself or misrepresenting facts in an Immigration adjudication could be punishable with criminal sanctions. It could also be grounds for finding of legal inadmissibility to the United States pursuant to fraud and misrepresentation.

So we are more talking about the legally binding nature of these affidavits and I will get into that a little bit more here in a minute but quoting directly from Chapter 20.5 from US Citizenship and Immigration Services, uscis.gov, quoting directly, section 213(a) of the Act and 8 CFR 213(a) require most family-based and certain employment-based intending immigrants who on or after December 19th, 1997 seek to enter the United States as immigrants or who apply for adjustment of status to establish that they are not inadmissible under Section 212(a)(4) of the Act by having a sponsor sign a legally, enforceable Affidavit of Support on behalf of the affected intending immigrant. So let's be clear. The I-864 Is legally binding. What does that mean? That means, for example let's take it in the context of the wife of an American citizen who is coming over to the United States on an immigrant spousal visa. What that means is the wife who comes into the United States, if she avails herself of means-tested benefits within the United States, it may be possible for the US Government to go ahead and seek recompense for the expenses associated with those means tested benefits from the sponsor who signed the legally binding I-864 Affidavit of Support. This is also true for those who are joint sponsors of an I-864 Affidavit of Support as they might be considered liable, joint severally liable for such expenditures as well.  So we are talking about benefits given out by the US Government maybe recompense for such benefits may be sought by the I-864 Affidavit of Support signer who signed it as a sponsor in association with an immigrant visa case.

For specific information regarding the I-864 in the context of the adjustment of status process and how the I-134 interplays with that document, I urge you to check out another video that we put up on this channel specific to that issue.