Family-based immigration law is a complex process, even if you just want to bring your kids with you when you come to America. For people looking to bring their foreign fiancé(e) into the country, matters can feel all the more complicated. With a little knowledge of the process and plenty of preparation, however, it should not be an insurmountable challenge.
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) allows U.S. citizens and their foreign fiancé(e)s to file for K-1 visas. In most instances the US citizen and fiancé must meet at least once in person during the two years proceeding filing. You are required to have a wedding planned within 90 days of your fiancé(e)s entrance into the country, or else the K-1 visa will become invalid. For this reason, it is crucial that you and your fiancé(e) already have all of your wedding plans good to go before you file for the K-1 visa. Not only does this increase the likelihood of the visas approval – the USCIS always likes to see people planning ahead – but it also helps ensure you won’t miss that 90-day marriage deadline.
After you marriage becomes official, the spouse that came from a foreign country using the K-1 visa is then eligible to apply for an adjustment of status. If successful, the adjustment will allow them to become a lawful permanent resident (LPR). Additionally, the children of your foreign fiancé(e) can likely enter the country using a K-2 visa, assuming that they are not 21 or older.
The steps involved with bringing your foreign fiancé(e) into the U.S. are:
- The U.S. sponsor must file a Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé(e), with USCIS to begin the process that culminates in an interview at a US consulate outside the US.
- The foreign fiancé(e) must bring all necessary paperwork to an embassy or consulate to apply for a K-1 visa. Paperwork usually includes a passport, Form DS-160, police certificates, medical examination records, photographs, and any evidence that shows both the foreign fiancé(e) and the U.S. sponsor actually know each other.
- Visa issued and travel top US
- Marry after entry to US within 90 days
- File for resident status, employment and travel authorization
Proof that both fiancés met in person is among items that are required. Applications for K-1 are carefully scrutinized by USCIS and consular officers prior to and after entry of the K-1 to the US looking for the actual intent of staying married to a U.S. sponsor, it is possible that the USCIS or the US consulate may not grant approval. You should consider the assistance of an immigration lawyer to file or continue the process.
Brown Immigration Law and our Cleveland immigration law attorneys can help you understand the foreign fiancé(e) immigration process from start to finish. With our legal knowledge and years of experience, you can be confident that your petition will be as complete as possible, reducing the possibility that the USCIS will reject or deny it. Contact our firm today to learn more or to schedule a consultation.