6. Can anyone else be a sponsor?
The Immigration and Nationality Act section 213A permits both a ‘joint sponsor’ and a ‘substitute sponsor’ in certain cases.
7. Who can be a ‘joint sponsor’, and when is a ‘joint sponsor’ allowed?
A ‘joint sponsor’ is someone who is willing to accept legal responsibility for supporting your family member with you. A ‘joint sponsor’ must meet all the same requirements as you, except the ‘joint sponsor’ does not need to be related to the immigrant. The ‘joint sponsor’, or the ‘joint sponsor’ and his or her household, must reach the 125 per cent income requirement alone. You cannot combine your income with that of a ‘joint sponsor’ to meet the income requirement.
8. Is there a limit on the number of ‘joint sponsors’?
No, there is no limit on the number of ‘joint sponsors’; however, each ‘joint sponsor’ must meet the 125 per cent of the poverty line income requirement for their household size. ‘Joint sponsors’ are not permitted if the petitioner meets the income requirements unless an Immigration or Consular Officer requests one.
9. How can I reinstate a visa petition that was revoked by the death of the original petitioner?
Typically, when the visa petitioner dies, the approved I-130 originally filed by the visa petitioner is automatically revoked. However, following the passage of the Family Sponsor Immigration Act, P.L. 107-150, beneficiaries of these petitions may file for reinstatement so long as they can provide an I-864 Affidavit of Support filed by a ‘substitute sponsor’.
10. What if a petitioner dies before all family members immigrate?
If the petitioner of a preference immigrant dies after the principal sponsored family member has immigrated but before a family member qualifying to ‘follow to join’ the principal immigrant has immigrated, another sponsor, acting and qualifying as a ‘joint sponsor,’ may file an Affidavit of Support on behalf of that immigrant.
Note: Take the example of a parent who petitions for her married daughter and her family to immigrate. The daughter and children immigrate immediately, but the husband chooses to wait for another year. A new Affidavit of Support signed by the petitioner would be required for the husband at the time he immigrates, but this would not be possible if the petitioning parent had died. In this instance, a ’joint sponsor’ would be permitted. In the case of an immediate relative, since each immediate relative family member is the beneficiary of a separate visa petition, a new petition and Affidavit of Support would be required.