An Affidavit of Support can be extremely helpful in most cases, but not when it comes to B-1/B-2 Visitor Visas. If you wish to “sponsor” a friend or family for a B-1/B-2 visitor visa, filing a Form I-134 may cause more harm than good.
What is an Affidavit of Support?
A Form I-134 affidavit of support serves as a visa applicant’s evidence of sponsorship, or evidence that the applicant has financial support and will not become a public charge of the United States. The form documents the personal finances of a sponsor currently in the U.S. and provides that a nonimmigrant entering the U.S. will not become financially dependent on federal welfare programs. Given the nature of the B-1/ B-2 visitor visas, an affidavit of support is not considered by consular officers because the foreign national is not expected to be in the U.S. for an extended period.
Financial Consideration B-1/B-2 Visa
Some family members or friends mistakenly file an affidavit of support for a B-1/B-2 visa applicant due to the financial considerations within the application. The application for B-1/B-2 asks about the financial state of the person or entity financially responsible for the trip to the United States. The purpose of this inquiry is to determine whether the applicant has the financial means to afford the extensive costs of the trip. In addition, consular officers often examine the applicant’s financial information during the interview to determine whether the applicant is an “intending immigrant,” or that the applicant intends to stay in the U.S. permanently.
Affidavit of Support Could Harm B-1/B-2 Application
An application for a B-1/B-2 visa is adjudicated based on visa applicant’s qualification and eligibility. The consular officer makes a determination by focusing on, amongst other factors, applicant’s social and economic ties to his/her home abroad. Since finance is an important part of this process, we do not recommend that a family member or friend submit an affidavit of support for a B-1/B-2 visa applicant unless a U.S. consular specifically requests a Form I-134. If submitted without a request, consular officers may consider the affidavit of support as evidence of the applicant’s inability to pay for the proposed trip.