Q&A’s published on Lawyers.com and the Epoch Times on April 12, 2019 1. Would My Being on Food Stamps Affect Me Helping My Mother Get Residency? 2. Naturalization with DWI 3. Tax Filing Status For Illegal Spouse

1. Would My Being on Food Stamps Affect Me Helping My Mother Get Residency?

I just became a citizen and I’m planning on helping my parents apply for residency but my family is in current need of assistance if I Apply and get approved for food stamps will that effect be being able to help my parents?

Mr. Lee answers:
If it is discovered that you are taking means tested benefits like food stamps, that could have an effect on your mother’s obtaining resident status as you must supply an I-864 affidavit of support in order for her to immigrate. Although the chances of discovery are not high, there is still a risk. Even if you have a financial co-sponsor, a relevant question by an adjudicating officer upon discovery could be whether the co-sponsor’s affidavit of support is credible since the cosponsor is not assisting your financial situation.

2. Naturalization with DWI

I am a permanent Resident for over 10 years, and decided it is time to apply for a US citizenship. One problem that I do have is in June 2015 I was arrested for a DWI (which is considered as a traffic offense in NJ) in the state of NJ. Will this have any negative effect on my application and cause it to be denied? Do I absolutely have to wait 5 years from the arrest date until I can start the process for naturalization? Do any other factors such as being a full-time student, owning a home, weigh in positively towards the decision making from USCIS? If the application does get denied, Do I have to wait another 5 years until I can re-apply?

Mr. Lee answers:
I will assume for purposes of your question that you were not cleared of the charge. Naturalization requires good moral character, in most cases for five years. You have a questionable case as to whether an application would be granted at this time. If only one DWI, however, the odds are good. DWIs in the past were not considered too damaging to applications, but have received much attention in this past decade. That is because of the pressure brought on to members of Congress by aggressive lobbying by interested parties, which in turn has meant the dragging of DHS officials before congressional committees on the issue. If you do decide to go forward with your naturalization case, you should attempt to make a showing of any equities that you have including any explanations for your DWI arrest.

3. Tax Filing Status For Illegal Spouse

How do I file my return if I recently got married to someone from another country, but my spouse has not yet received his green card or social security number?

Mr. Lee answers:
There is no one right answer for the question, but we favor married and filing separately if the individual is overseas. Your tax status is in my understanding determined on your marital status at the end of the calendar year. If you were married this year and your spouse is in the US, you should file a joint tax return or file as married filing separately.  For filing jointly, you should be able to work it out so that your spouse files with you with a taxpayer identification number (ITIN). Any of the accounting service should be able to assist you and your spouse with doing that.