USCIS Virtual Listening Session on Public Charge Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) invited you to participate in a virtual listening session on Public Charge. During the sessions, we asked for your feedback on the public charge ground of inadmissibility.

  • On September 14, 2021 at 2 pm Eastern we hosted a session for the general public.

  • On October 5, 2021 at 2 pm Eastern we hosted a session open to state, territorial, local, and tribal benefits granting agencies and nonprofit organizations.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is seeking feedback from the public on creating a new public charge rule that is fair and consistent, while not imposing undue burdens on noncitizens seeking admission to or permanent resident status in the United States. DHS will consider the information collected from the listening session in addition to the written comments submitted to Regulations.gov by Oct. 22, 2021.

On March 9, 2021, a federal court vacated the 2019 public charge rule, under which DHS could have found certain noncitizens inadmissible if they had accessed (or were likely to access) a wide range of public benefits (such as Medicaid, food stamps, or other assistance), preventing them from being admitted to or becoming permanent residents of the United States. DHS is beginning to work on a new, more equitable policy.

On Aug. 20, 2021, DHS published an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to solicit public comments, including from state, territorial, local and tribal agencies that provide public benefits, nonprofit organizations and others. DHS will use these comments to help guide public charge policy. Asking for broad input from the public is a crucial step in making sure that DHS develops public charge regulations that avoid undue fear in the immigrant community and eliminate confusion among immigrant-serving organizations, benefit-granting agencies and the public.

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