If you are a U.S. Citizen and engaged to be married to a foreign national living abroad, your foreign national fiance may be eligible to receive a K-1 nonimmigrant fiance visa to join you in the United States. The K-1 visa allows a nonimmigrant to travel to the U.S., marry his/her fiance within 90 days of admission into the U.S., and, thereafter, apply for a Green Card via adjustment of status. Coming to the U.S. via a K-1 visa is one of the fastest ways of re-uniting loved ones together in the U.S.
If you are a U.S. Citizen or a Green Card Holder and are already married to the foreign national, please refer to our family-based immigration page by clicking here.
Benefits of the K-1 Nonimmigrant Fiance Visa:
- Fast processing time;
- Allows the U.S. Citizen and foreign national fiance to live together in the U.S. and get to know each other for up to 90 days before getting married;
- The foreign national may be able to work after applying for a work permit;
- The foreign national’s unmarried children under 21 years of age may be eligible for a K-2 visa; and,
- After receiving a K-1 visa and marrying the U.S. Citizen, the foreign national is eligible to apply for a Green Card while remaining in the U.S.
To qualify for a K-1 visa, the following requirements must be met:
- The U.S. petitioner must be a U.S. Citizen;
- The foreign national must reside outside of the U.S.;
- The U.S. petitioner and foreign national must intend to marry within 90 days of the foreign national entering the United States;
- The U.S. petitioner and the foreign national must both be free to marry, and any previous marriages must have been legally terminated by divorce, death, or annulment; and,
- Subject to some exceptions, the U.S. petitioner and the foreign national must have met, in-person, at least once within 2 years of the filing of the petition.
Process of Obtaining a K-1 Nonimmigrant Fiance Visa:
The process of obtaining a K-1 nonimmigrant fiance visa will vary depending upon numerous factors. However, the process can be summarized as follows. The first step in obtaining a K-1 visa is to ensure that all of the above-mentioned eligibility requirements are met.
I. Filing Form I-129F with USCIS:
Next, the U.S. Citizen must file Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance, with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”). The Law Office of Van R. Ngo, LLC, can file this form on your behalf, with all of the necessary supporting documentation, to ensure you have the best chance of getting approved.
II. Pre-Processing with the NVC:
If USCIS approves Form I-129F, the case file is, then, sent to the National Visa Center (“NVC”). During this phase, the NVC may require the submission of documents. The Law Office of Van R. Ngo, LLC, can assist you with any of these submissions to ensure a positive and expedient result.
III. Visa Application with the U.S. Embassy:
Next, the NVC will send the case file to the U.S. Embassy of the country where the foreign national resides. The U.S. Embassy will require the foreign national to complete numerous tasks, including, completion of an Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application Form, submission of an Affidavit of Support and numerous other documents, and attendance of an interview at the U.S. Embassy. The Law Office of Van R. Ngo, LLC, assists its clients throughout all of these steps to ensure that the foreign national has the best chance of being approved for a K-1 visa.
IV. Travel to the United States:
Once approved, a K-1 visa is typically valid for 6 months, meaning the foreign national will have up to 6 months to travel to the United States and seek admission into the U.S. with the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”).
V. Marriage of Parties:
After being admitted into the U.S., the U.S. Citizen and foreign national have up to 90 days to marry one another in the United States. After being admitted into the U.S., the foreign national is also eligible to apply for a temporary 90-day work permit.
VI. Adjustment of Status with USCIS:
Once the U.S. Citizen and foreign national marry each other, the foreign national may apply for a U.S. Green Card via adjustment of status while remaining in the U.S. When applying for adjustment of status, an extension of the work permit may also be filed. The Law Office of Van R. Ngo, LLC, assists its clients with the filing of all necessary forms and supporting documentation to ensure that the foreign national has the best chance of obtaining a Green Card.
USCIS may schedule an appointment with the foreign national to obtain his or her biometrics. At this appointment, the foreign national’s fingerprints, picture, and signature may be taken to confirm the identity of the foreign national and run required background and security checks.
Next, USCIS will likely schedule an interview for the U.S. Citizen and the foreign national to get answers about the adjustment of status application. The Law Office of Van R. Ngo, LLC, prepares its clients for any interviews scheduled by USCIS.
After any applicable USCIS interview, the foreign national will be notified via mail whether his or her application is granted. If the application is granted, the foreign national will be considered a permanent resident at that point in time.
For more information about the K-1 Nonimmigrant Fiance Visa and to find out if you qualify for this visa, contact us today by clicking here.