The I-864 (I-485) Request for Evidence (RFE): What to do when you receive it

The I-864 Affidavit of Support is a required document for most Adjustment of Status Filings, especially family-based filings such as a filing for an Immigrant Spouse, Child, or Parent. The I-864 assesses the Financial Capabilities of the Petitioner, and determines Sponsorship Eligibility.

Now, if you are receiving the RFE or Request for Evidence for the I-864 (The USCIS Notice states the I-485 needs the I-864), one of four possibilities probably occurred:

  • First, you did not send an I-864, but it was required;
  • Second, you did send the I-864, but did not attach the requisite evidence;
  • Third, you did send the I-864, but the Petitioner does not meet the Minimum requirements;
  • Fourth, you did send the I-864, the Petitioner does meet the Minimum requirements, but USCIS sent the RFE by mistake.

What Determines whether someone has sufficient income?

The I-864P provides the Federal Poverty Level Guidelines. The Petitioner has to overcome both of the following to avoid receiving an RFE:

  1. Annual Income (Established by the past 12 months of paystubs from the same employment)
  2. Adjusted Gross Income – AGI (the taxed income in the 1040 Tax Return)

Many times someone meets the annual income, but their AGI is below the I-864P. Again, both figures must be above the I-864P.

You can make $1,000,000 a year, but if you have an AGI of $5000, USCIS would question your financial ability to sponsor an immigrant family member.

What if my AGI is too Low, but my Annual Income is Sufficient?

You have two options.

First, you can attach assets to the I-864. More information can be found here: I-864 Asset Calculations

Second, you can show USCIS the annual income overcomes the I-864P, and that the next tax years AGI will overcome the I-864P. How to do this? You can provide:

  • 1040 of a new tax year (if in a new tax year)
  • Paystubs
  • Employment Contract
  • Proof of a Raise in pay
  • A letter from the employer regarding estimated annual income and the expected length of employment

What if my income is insufficient in both annual income and AGI?

A Co-sponsor would be required if assets cannot help you overcome the I-864P.

More information on Joint Sponsors found here:

I-864 Affidavit of Support: Joint Sponsor Guidance

Should I provide IRS Form 1040 or the IRS Tax Return Transcript?

Our office recommends providing both, the 1040 and IRS Tax return Transcript. Guidance can be found here:

How to Request your IRS Transcript: Helpful Guide to Acquire this Commonly Requested Immigration Supporting Document



Related Blog Posts:

USCIS Marriage-Based Adjustment of Status Interview in 2021: Tips and Tricks

Joint Bona Fide Documents: How to Start meeting the USCIS I-130 Evidence Requirement for a Marriage



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