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Fiancé / Fiancée K-1 Visas in the U.S.
U.S. citizens can file petitions for their foreign national fiancé(e) living outside of the United States to enter the country and marry. Fiancé(e) visas, also known as K-1 non-immigrant visas, are not needed when U.S. citizens plan to marry outside of the U.S. or if their fiancé(e) currently resides in the United States. When this is the case, U.S. citizens can complete the immediate relative immigration process for their new spouse. To obtain a visa for a foreign national fiancé(e), Form I-29F, Petition for Alien Fiancé(e), must be completed.
Qualifying Criteria for K-1 Visa
The eligibility requirements for a K-1 fiancé(e) visa are:
- The petitioner is a U.S. citizen
- The petitioner intends to marry within 90 days of their fiancé(e) entering the United States
- Petitioner and fiancé(e) are legally permitted to marry
- Petitioner and fiancé(e) have met, in person, at least once within 2 years of filing a petition
For applicants who have not met in person within two years of filing a visa petition, there are two exceptions that require a waiver. Waivers can be awarded to applicants if the requirement violates strict cultural customs or social conventions of a fiancé(e)'s home country or religion, or if there is proof that meeting in person would result in extreme hardship.
Once the K-1 visa has been issued, a fiancé(e) can enter the United States for 90 days. Before the 90 days expire, a marriage ceremony must take place. During this time, a fiancé(e) can apply to the USCIS for employment authorization. The USCIS does not grant any extensions to the 90 day stay and unmarried foreign nationals will be in violation of U.S. immigration law if they remain in the country. After the marriage, U.S. citizens can apply for their spouse's permanent resident status by completing the immediate relative immigration process.
K-2, K-3, and K-4 Visas
If the fiancé(e) of a U.S. citizen has an unmarried child under the age of 21, the child may also be permitted to enter the United States with a K-2 non-immigrant visa. Eligible children can be included on Form I-29F. Foreign nationals who are already married to a U.S. citizen and are living outside of the United States can also obtain visas that will permit them and their children to enter the country.
K-3 non-immigrant visas are for spouses of U.S. citizens living outside of the United States. In order to be eligible, foreign national spouses must be married to a U.S. citizen and have a pending petition filed by their U.S. citizen husband or wife. Upon admittance into the United States, K-3 visa holders can apply immediately for employment authorization and for an adjustment of status to a permanent resident.
K-4 non-immigrant visas are available for unmarried, under 21 children of K-3 visa holders or applicants. K-4 visa holders can also apply for an adjustment of status by having a U.S. citizen file a petition on their behalf.
Client-Focused Assistance for U.S. Citizens Near Orlando
If you are a U.S. citizen looking to obtain a visa for your fiancé(e) or spouse, the legal team at Brown Immigration Law is prepared to help you swiftly and successfully complete the process. In addition to assistance with the necessary forms and legal work, our experienced attorneys can provide you with information about the procedures, requirements, and deadlines inherent to your situation. This will equip you with a solid understanding of what you can do to avoid any complications in the future.
To discuss your case with a knowledgeable lawyer from our firm, contact Brown Immigration Law today.
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