The Fiance(e) visa, also known as a K-1 visa, is available for foreign nationals who are currently abroad and are engaged to United States citizens. Once approved, a U.S. Embassy or Consulate will issue a visa good for one entry with the purpose of entering the United States to marry the specific United States citizen listed in the original petition. Once inside the United States, the couple is supposed to marry within 90 days of entry.
However, once married the couple still has to affirmatively file additional applications so the foreign-national spouse can reside and work permanently as a lawful permanent resident (Green Card holder) inside the United States. The following is a brief description of the procedure for a foreign national fiancé to become a lawful permanent resident:
- File initial paperwork with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services;
- Once U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services approve the petition they forward the approval to the National Visa Center which is part of the U.S. Department of State;
- Once the National Visa Center completes their processing they will forward the file to the appropriate U.S. Embassy or Consulate;
- Before approving the visa the U.S. Embassy or Consulate will conduct an interview with the applicant to verify that they qualify;
- Once the foreign national enters the United States on the K-1 visa the couple should marry within 90 days;
- After marriage, the foreign national has to apply to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to adjust their status from a K-1 to a lawful permanent resident;
- The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will usually conduct an in-person interview with the couple before approving the adjustment of status application.
A few other key points relating to the K-1 visa are that the couple must have met in person at least once within 2 years of filing the initial paperwork; unmarried children under 21 of the foreign national might be allowed to enter with the parent and become a lawful permanent resident with their parent; the foreign national can not become a lawful permanent resident by marrying someone other than the original petitioner, and if U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services approves the adjustment of status application before the 2nd wedding anniversary then the foreign national will receive conditional lawful permanent resident status (which is different than regular lawful permanent resident status)
The K-1 fiance visa process has many steps and can be complicated. If you would like to find out whether a fiancé visa is appropriate for your particular situation or would like to know more about our services please contact us today at 313-963-2505 .