The immigration hole can drive individuals to pay lifelong help

A Talmann notes that a loophole in US immigration policy may require him to support his ex-wife to the death.

Steve Summers is being sued in federal court by his ex-wife Evangelina Zapata de Summers.

After six years of marriage, they divorced in 2009.

Now she’s bringing her ex back to court for breaking his contract with her and the US government.

Since the mid-1990s, law has mandated that U.S. citizens like Summers must sign the I-864 affidavit in order to bring a non-U.S. Citizen such as a spouse into the country.

To ensure immigrants don’t weigh on welfare programs, the sponsor must sign the document essentially agreeing to support the immigrant with 125 percent of federal poverty if they have no income.

But if the two parties get divorced, the affidavit will stand.

A US citizen can get really confused under these circumstances, “Summers said.

Zapata is suing for a living for the rest of her life.

Summers attorney Marcus Barrera tells Action 4 that even though they are divorced and they lived in the US for about a decade, he may still have to pay.

“The problem is, these permanent residents come back and sue their sponsors. You sit at home and do nothing. The law makes it pretty clear that they need to be helped with 125 percent of poverty, Barrera said. There is no mechanism built into this situation to force the person to get a permanent resident job and become a citizen or you will be deported. “

According to Summers, his wife can work, but she doesn’t.

The only way to override the I-864 affidavit is for the immigrant to become a US citizen, work for 10 years, not retain permanent residence status, or die.

Although Zapata remarried and divorced, the contract remains.

“There is no incentive for them to become a US citizen, no incentive to work. There’s nowhere I can get out of this contract, Summers said.

“So here they stay suspended and basically become a parasite to the original person who signed the affidavit,” Barrera said.

Summers says he is doing everything possible to raise awareness of this part of immigration reform that lawmakers and lawyers rarely talk about and often misunderstand.

“It was very difficult for me to find a lawyer. I went to lawyers who specialize in immigration and was told this was my imagination – “Don’t worry, Steve” – ​​only to find out that this has started, Summers said.

So Summers reaches the congressmen in the valley.

The law is pretty ambiguous and I think there are some clarifications that could be made, Summers said.

“Any immigration law should contain something that requires permanent residence. If they don’t want to work to become permanent, productive members of US society, they need to be pushed back where they came from or the rest of the US Citizens, including the sponsor, need to keep supporting them, and we can just don’t continue, said Barrera.

Action 4 News called on Congressman Ruben Hinojosa to share Mr Summers’ story, and his office replied that they will address this issue while they work to draft law to reform immigration in the House.

The next Summers pre-trial hearing is scheduled for September 5th.

Comments are closed.