New Bipartisan Bill, Visa Bulletin & Green Card Updates
Very positive news regarding the bipartisan Bill for Americans! A new, bipartisan law would improve Americans with disabilities’ economic security. The Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program was intended to eliminate poverty among individuals with disabilities, but the program’s outmoded criteria force people to live in poverty to qualify for monthly help, the exact reverse of what the program’s designers intended.
The Arc applauds Senator Sherrod Brown, Senator Bill Cassidy, Representative Brian Higgins, and Representative Brian Fitzpatrick for introducing the SSI Savings Penalty Elimination Act. This bipartisan legislation, which is also backed by more than 370 groups, will enable millions of people with disabilities to earn and save more money for their futures by making long overdue changes to the SSI program.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Program
Over 7.5 million older individuals and those with disabilities get vital benefits from the SSI program, which was established 50 years ago, to help them pay for necessities like food, clothing, and housing. But out-of-date qualifying requirements penalize SSI recipients for saving money, which drives them into poverty. In most states, SSI also ensures eligibility for Medicaid, which pays for long-term support, services, and health care.
SSI recipients are only permitted to have a total of $2,000 in assets, while married couples are only permitted to have $3,000 in assets. Cash and bank accounts are assets that are subject to the SSI asset cap. The majority of retirement accounts, stocks, bonds, the value of life insurance policies, burial money, and other personal property, all of which are over $1,500,
This stringent asset cap has not been revised since 1984, and it is not inflation-indexed. According to Darcy Milburn, decades of inflation and inaction have made an essential safety net program into a tightrope. The most an SSI recipient can have in a bank account is 80% less than what they were permitted to save in 1972.
People with disabilities are forced to balance their finances on a razor’s edge due to SSI’s severe asset limits. It’s an extraordinarily challenging administrative load and a fine line to walk that quickly tips toward losing benefits entirely.
SSI Savings Penalty Elimination Act
The SSI Savings Penalty Elimination Act would increase the individual asset cap for SSI benefits to $10,000 and adjust it to inflation. In the future, it would also increase the cap for married couples to $20,000 to assist in remedying a detrimental marriage penalty. Millions of people with disabilities would benefit greatly from the legislation, which would also enable SSI beneficiaries to use their funds to cover unexpected situations.
4 out of 10 SSI recipients live in poverty as a result of the program’s low asset limitations and insufficient cash payouts. Due in large part to SSI, people with disabilities experience poverty at a rate that is more than twice as high as people without impairments. These obstacles get worse by the Social Security Administration’s crisis, where millions of people await appointments, judgments on applications, and appeals on denied claims.
According to Milburn, increasing the SSI asset limit is one of the most crucial things we can do to better the financial security of millions of elderly and disabled individuals. The current asset restrictions prevent people from obtaining financial independence and keep them in poverty.
The inability to save for necessities like a security deposit or auto repairs without running the danger of losing benefits means that many SSI recipients are only one emergency away from going without food and shelter. The detrimental effects of the current asset limits for SSI claimants affect their families, communities, and our economy in addition to themselves.
The ark has steadfastly argued against the current unjust and discriminatory caps on SSI assets and sought modifications to them. For persons with disabilities to have more financial security and support and to seek opportunities to shape their futures, we have urged Congress to modernize SSI rules and benefits.
USCIS Visa Bulletin & Green Card Updates
There will be a restocking of the general supply of green cards on October 1, the start of the new fiscal year for the federal government. If you have a priority date and want to apply for a green card through an adjustment of status in the family-based or employment-based category, now may be a crucial time.
It remains challenging to understand the Visa Bulletin, very crucial to this process. determines whether an FB or EB AOS application qualifies for submission to USCIS and, if so, whether it will receive a grant. An application for adjustment of status is one that you submit to change your immigration status from temporary migrant to permanent resident. This is a crucial step in feeling secure while you establish a life in the United States.
Priority dates and the Visa bulletin have an impact on both the ability to apply to USCIS and, after submission, the agency’s capacity to approve the application. Your priority date is the date that their FB or EB immigrant petition was filed, or, if one is necessary, the date that they filed their perm application.
Applications for Facebook and AOS remain family-based applications submitted by people thus, not US citizens’ spouses or children. You remain unaffected by the annual cap on green cards if applying for permanent residency based on your status as the spouse or child of a US citizen. Priority dates listed in the Visa bulletin have no bearing on your ability to submit an AOS application and, if submitted, have it accepted.
FB or EB AOS Eligibility
Your priority date must be current to submit an application for FB or EB AOS for a specific month. The Visa Bulletin Chart states that USCIS uses that month to decide if an application qualifies for submission for the FB and EB Green Card categories. Each month, the Visa Bulletin publishes two charts: one with filing dates and one with final action dates.
If the chart for your country of changeability and green card category marks with a C or lists a cut-off date that your priority date falls before, your priority date remains current. To decide whether an FB or EB AOS application qualifies for filing, USCIS will refer to the dates for the filing chart. USCIS will make use of the final action dates chart in additional months.
The table USCIS employs to determine whether FB or EB AOS applications, however, submitted subjects to change each month. Your priority date must remain current in the chart employed by USCIS in a given month for you to qualify to submit your application within that month. Because of this, USCIS may use the final action dates chart to assess if an FB or EB AOS application qualifies for filing, even though there exists a chart exclusively for dates for filing.
To establish whether an FB or EB AOS application remains eligible to submit during that month, USCIS announces which chart it will utilize. Once your FB or EB AOS application submits correctly, the final action dates chart then remains the only Visa bulletin chart that counts in deciding whether the application qualifies for acceptance. Your application then, completed by USCIS, which determines it’s approval based on its merits.
For USCIS to be able to approve the application, both your priority date and the final action dates chart must be up to date.
When processing your application, USCIS examines the information provided, sends any requests for additional information, gathers biometric data, runs background checks, and, if necessary, schedules and conducts an interview with you.
The moment your priority date becomes current in time
The chart is a different issue from the USCIS case processing time for your AOS application, according to the final action dates. Your application receives acceptance if, in the month that USCIS completes processing your FB or EB AOS application and determines that it remains approvable on the merits, your priority date also remains current by the final action dates table.
It is not enough for USCIS to approve your application just because your priority date is current in a given month’s final action dates chart. It must be current as of the last day of the month in which USCIS considers your application to be admissible based on its merits. If your priority date is not current according to the final action dates chart in the month that USCIS completes processing your application and determines it is approveable on its merits, USCIS should keep your application in limbo until your priority date becomes current.
The final action dates chart indicates that provided no necessary documents have expired and USCIS does not otherwise request updated evidence, your application remains acceptable. USCIS will probably send you a request for proof if the requisite documentation is out of date or requires new evidence.
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