A new dawn of uncertainty has broken upon immigrants seeking admission to the United States as the ‘public charge’ rule takes effect. The rule – which green lights the federal government to refuse entry or legal status to someone who might become reliant on welfare programs – has caused fresh alarm and worry for the immigrant community. 

The US Supreme Court has paved the way for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to consider factors such as income, education, age, health and skills before deciding whether or not someone might become dependant on taxpayer-funded programs. 

Millions of immigrants are expected to cease any public welfare programs they have benefited from – including Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, and WIC – the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women and Infants – in an attempt to avoid deportation. In fact, accessing WIC won’t affect applications for legal status, but the seeds of paranoia and fear have been sown. The number of WIC enrolments has already fallen. 

As immigrants withdraw from food assistance programs and other government benefits, one of the big questions that people need clarity on is whether parents should cancel their children’s Medicaid health insurance. Once again, for many people, being told that children receiving benefits will not jeopardize a parent’s application isn’t enough – fear is a powerful thing. 

These are troubling times and if the public charge ruling affects you and your family, we’re here to support and guide you. The Bighorn Law immigration team worked around the clock to review and compile residency applications for our clients, ahead of the ruling taking effect – applications filed after February 24th are now subject to the new guidelines.

Bighorn Law specializes in immigration matters. Our dedicated team can answer your questions about the public charge ruling and give solid advice that you can trust. A face-to-face chat often helps and with our bilingual attorneys, nothing is ever lost in translation. Call us at (801) 666-2899 and schedule your free consultation. 

Bighorn Staff

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