Integrity Legal

3rd May 2009

Income Requirements for Fiance and Spouse Visa Sponsorship: 2009

In order to sponsor a Thai fiancee or wife for a visa to the USA, a US Citizen petitioner must prove that he can support the Thai applicant in such a manner that the Thai applicant will not become a burden to the state. Therefore, the US Citizen must present an affidavit of support proving an income that is deemed appropriate for supporting a Thai fiancee or wife. US Immigration policy dictates that in order to be able to support an immigrant one must produce an income that is 125% of the poverty level as set forth by US Housing and Human Services. Since Housing and Human Services constantly readjusts their definition of the poverty level, the requisite income required for immigrant sponsorship changes from year to year.

Below are the poverty figures for the 48 contiguous United States with calculation made for 125% of that figure:

Size of Family Unit Poverty Guidelines 125% of Poverty Guidelines
1 $10,830 $13,538
2 14,570 18,213
3 18,310 22,888
4 22,050 27,563
5 25,790 32,238
6 29,530 36,913
7 33,270 41,588
8 37,010 46,263

Housing and Human Services has set a different standard for figuring the poverty level in Alaska, below is the poverty level for Alaska along with a calculation of 125% of that government defined monetary level.

Size of Family Unit Poverty Guidelines 125% of Poverty Guidelines
1 $13,530 $16,913
2 18,210 22,763
3 22,890 28,613
4 27,570 34,463
5 32,250 40,313
6 36,930 46,163
7 41,610 52,013
8 46,290 57,863

Housing and Human Services also sets a different poverty line for Hawaii, below is the poverty guideline for Hawaii and a calculation of 125% of that guideline

Size of Family Unit Poverty Guidelines 125% of Poverty Guidelines
1 $12,460 $15,575
2 16,760 20,950
3 21,060 26,325
4 25,360 31,700
5 29,660 37,075
6 33,960 42,450
7 38,260 47,825
8 42,560 53,200

It should be noted that active duty military need only show 100% of the federal poverty guidelines in order to be entitled to support an immigrant relative either entering on a K1 or immigrant visa.

For those with a deficiency in income (a more acute problem with prospective sponsors who are self employed) it may be possible to use a joint sponsor in order to make up the income shortfall. Another method of overcoming this obstacle is by using assets. For affidavit of support purposes, a prospective sponsor of a Thai fiancee or wife can make up the difference in income between what is actually earned and what is statutorily required by showing assets amounting to 5 times the difference between what a prospective sponsor earns and the legally required level. Therefore if a prospective sponsor falls $1,000 short of the required level, then he can show $5,000 in assets to make up that difference. US petitioners must submit the affidavit of support to the US Embassy in Thailand at the time of visa interview.

For more information please see

K1 visa Thailand

K3 visa Thailand

US visa Thailand

(Note: Nothing written herein should be regarded as a substitute for legal individual legal advice from a duly licensed US attorney. No attorney client privilege shall be inferred to have been created by reading this post.)


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