Chapter 1 - Purpose and Background
A nonimmigrant is an alien who is admitted to the United States for a specific temporary period of time. Section 101(a)(15) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) lists most categories of nonimmigrants; additionally, nonimmigrant categories may be authorized in legislation other than the INA. In order to be admitted to the United States as a nonimmigrant, an alien must generally have a permanent residence abroad and qualify for the nonimmigrant classification sought.
The U.S. Department of State (DOS) issues nonimmigrant visas at U.S. embassies and consulates abroad. Background and history specific to each nonimmigrant visa is discussed in the category-specific parts of the Policy Manual.
INA 101(a)(15) – Nonimmigrant classifications
Volume 2: Nonimmigrants, Part A, Nonimmigrant Policies and Procedures
- Chapter 4 - Extension of Stay and Change of Status (PDF, 1.38 MB)
- Appendix: Summary of Nonimmigrant Categories Subject to Public Benefits Condition (PDF, 354.53 KB)
Volume 8: Admissibility, Part G, Public Charge Ground of Inadmissibility
- Part G - Public Charge Ground of Inadmissibility (PDF, 498.56 KB)
- Chapter 1 - Purpose and Background (PDF, 2.85 MB)
- Chapter 2 - Public Charge Inadmissibility Ground (PDF, 909 KB)
- Chapter 3 - Applicability (PDF, 3.3 MB)
- Chapter 4 - Prospective Determination Based on Totality of the Circumstances (PDF, 2.15 MB)
- Chapter 5 - Factors (PDF, 539.3 KB)
- Chapter 6 - Age (PDF, 791.35 KB)
- Chapter 7 - Health (PDF, 1.89 MB)
- Chapter 8 - Family Status (PDF, 1.02 MB)
- Chapter 9 - Assets, Resources, and Financial Status (PDF, 8.68 MB)
- Chapter 10 - Public Benefits (PDF, 3.51 MB)
- Chapter 11 - Education and Skills (PDF, 2.52 MB)
- Chapter 12 - Prospective Immigration Status and Expected Period of Admission (PDF, 523.68 KB)
- Chapter 13 - Additional Support through Sponsorship (PDF, 3.77 MB)
- Chapter 14 - Heavily Weighted Factors (PDF, 4.35 MB)
- Chapter 15 - Totality of the Circumstances Scenarios (PDF, 2.24 MB)
- Chapter 16 - Waivers of Inadmissibility Based on Public Charge Ground (PDF, 596.42 KB)
- Chapter 17 - Adjudicating Public Charge Inadmissibility (PDF, 1.3 MB)
- Chapter 18 - Public Charge Bonds (PDF, 1.92 MB)
- Chapter 19 - Public Charge Bonds: Posting and Accepting Bonds (PDF, 2.35 MB)
- Chapter 20 - Public Charge Bonds: Maintaining, Substituting, and Canceling Bonds (PDF, 3.75 MB)
- Resources (PDF, 1.05 MB)
- Appendix: Applicability of INA 212(a)(4) to Employment-Based Adjustment of Status Applications (PDF, 432.07 KB)
- Appendix: Applicability of INA 212(a)(4) to Family-Based Adjustment of Status Applications (PDF, 452.4 KB)
- Appendix: Applicability of INA 212(a)(4) to Other Applicants (PDF, 184.52 KB)
- Appendix: Applicability of INA 212(a)(4) to Refugee, Asylee, and Parolee Adjustment of Status Applications (PDF, 425.43 KB)
- Appendix: Applicability of INA 212(a)(4) to Special Immigrant Adjustment of Status Applications (PDF, 174.68 KB)
- Appendix: Eligibility for Public Benefits (PDF, 362.32 KB)
- Appendix: Totality of the Circumstances Framework (PDF, 227.14 KB)
Volume 12: Citizenship and Naturalization, Part D, General Naturalization Requirements
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is revising its policy guidance in the USCIS Policy Manual to align with the Fee Schedule and Changes to Certain Other Immigration Benefit Request Requirements Final Rule, published in the Federal Register on August 3, 2020. This guidance becomes effective October 2, 2020. For information regarding implementation, see Appendix: 2020 Fee Rule Litigation Summary.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is updating and incorporating relevant Adjudicator’s Field Manual (AFM) content into the USCIS Policy Manual. As that process is ongoing, USCIS has moved any remaining AFM content to its corresponding USCIS Policy Manual Part, in PDF format, until relevant AFM content has been properly incorporated into the USCIS Policy Manual. To the extent that a provision in the USCIS Policy Manual conflicts with remaining AFM content or Policy Memoranda, the updated information in the USCIS Policy Manual prevails. To find remaining AFM content, see the crosswalk (PDF, 327.05 KB) between the AFM and the Policy Manual.
This technical update replaces all instances of the term “foreign national” with “alien” throughout the Policy Manual as used to refer to a person who meets the definition provided in INA 101(a)(3) [“any person not a citizen or national of the United States”].