Immigrant Eligibility FAQ

Immigrant Eligibility FAQ

I am undocumented, can I apply for benefits for myself and my family?

Yes, everyone has the right to apply for our services.

What HRA services do immigrants qualify for?

You do not have to be a citizen or a Legal Permanent Resident to be eligible for services. You may be eligible if you have another immigration status. Undocumented immigrants may be eligible for certain benefits and can also apply on behalf of their children. See our Community Guide to Public Benefits for Immigrants for additional information.
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Does HRA share information with federal immigration authorities?

HRA will not report your personal information to anyone, except if required by law. NYC Executive Order 41 protects the confidentiality of anyone seeking City services. HRA will only ask for your immigration status if it is required to determine eligibility or if it is required by law.


I'm an immigrant, will receiving services affect my immigration case?

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) states that receiving:

  • The Supplemental Nutrition Program (formerly known as food stamps) or other food assistance and health care benefits, including Medicaid, will not affect your immigration case.
  • Cash assistance, SSI and long-term care in a nursing home or another institution may or may not affect your immigration case, depending on your situation.
For information about your particular immigration case we recommend that you consult an immigration lawyer.

If I am receiving social services benefits, can I receive HRA documentation to qualify for a USCIS fee waiver?

Yes, HRA clients can receive an HRA budget letter to use when applying for a USCIS fee waiver. Clients receiving cash assistance or SNAP benefits should call the Family Independence Administration (FIA)’s automated line at 718-722-8009.
Clients receiving Medicaid should call HRA’s Infoline at 718-557-1399.


How can I get a historical record letter from HRA to support my application for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status?

To request historical record letter, contact HRA’s Infoline at 718-557-1399.


I don’t speak English well. Are there any services available to help?

Free interpretation services are available at all City agencies, including HRA. Federal, state and local laws protect your right to get services even if you do not speak English well.
HRA offers a variety of free language services:

  1. Interpretation services over the phone at HRA sites.
  2. Bilingual staff may interpret where possible.
  3. Face-to-face interpreters may be arranged in some instances
  4. Translated documents: HRA-developed documents are translated into six languages (Arabic, Chinese, Haitian-Creole, Korean, Russian and Spanish), as required by Local Law 73.

What do I do if I have an issue at an HRA office and my worker or the manager is not able to help me? How do I make a complaint?

For additional support with your case, please call HRA’s Infoline at 718-557-1399. To file a complaint against the Agency, please contact 311. Filing a complaint will not affect your case.