K-1 Visa

To establish K-1 visa classification for an alien fiance(e), an American citizen must file a petition, Form I-129F, Petition for Relative or Fiance(e), with the Regional Service Center of the United States Bureau of Citizenship and immigration Services (USCIS). Such petitions may not be processed abroad. The approved petition will be forwarded by the USCIS to the American consular office where the foreign fiance(e) will apply for his or her visa. A petition is valid for a period of four months from the date of USCIS action, and may be revalidated by the consular officer.

Do I qualify?

You must be engaged to a US citizen with the intent to marry legally. The petitioner and beneficiary must have previously met in person within the past two years unless the Attorney General waives that requirement.

How to apply?

Upon receipt of an approved petition, the American consular officer will notify the beneficiary and give him or her the necessary forms and instructions to apply for a “K” visa. A fiance(e) visa applicant is an intending immigrant, which means he or she must meet most of the same requirements of an immigrant visa applicant. The following documents must be submitted with the appropriate fees:

1   Valid passport
2   Birth certificate
3   Divorce or death certificate of any previous spouse
4   Police certificate from all places lived since age 16
5   Medical examination
6   Evidence of support (including Form I-134)
7   Evidence of valid relationship with the petitioner
8   Photographs

As soon as the processing of a case is completed and the applicant has all necessary documents, a consular officer will interview the fiance(e). If found eligible, a visa will be issued to the fiancé(e). The visa is valid for one entry during a period of six months. A non-refundable $20.00 application fee is collected at posts, which issue machine-readable visas.

What to expect at the US port of entry?

A port of entry is the place airport, sea port, or land entry point where you enter the United States. At the port of entry, you will receive a stamp in your passport giving temporary permission to work while preparing for marriage to the U.S. citizen. The marriage must take place within 90 days of admission into the United States. Following the marriage, the alien spouse must apply to the USCIS to establish a record of entry for conditional permanent residence status. The conditional status will be removed after two years when to the USCIS for removal of the conditional status.

Can I bring my family?

The unmarried, minor children of a K-1 beneficiary are eligible for a “K-2″ nonimmigrant visa status. Make sure to name the children in the petition submitted on your behalf. A separate petition is not required if the children accompany or follow the alien fiance(e) within one year from the date of issuance of the K-1 visa. After one year, a separate immigrant visa petition is required for for the children of the fiancé(e).

Can I work?

Yes. You must, as the fiancé(e), apply for work authorization with the USICS