What Is a K-1 Fiancé Visa?

Person holding passport in airport

K-1 Fiancé Visa is a nonimmigrant visa issued to a foreign national living abroad to enter the United States to marry a United States citizen. The fiancé has 6 months to enter the United States, and the US citizen petitioner must marry their fiancé(e) within 90 days of entering the US. 

7 Requirements to Apply For a K-1 Visa 
The qualifications for a USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) Form I-129F, Petition For Alien Fiancé(e) are: 

  1. You (the petitioner) must be a United States citizen.  
  2. You and your fiancé must intend to marry. 
  3. Your marriage must be legally valid in the state you will be married in. The marriage cannot be for the sole purpose of immigrating to the US.  
  4. Both you and your fiancé(e) must intend to establish a life together. 
  5. You and your fiancé(e) must prove you are legally free to marry. Any previous marriages must have been legally terminated by divorce, death or annulment.  
  6. You and your fiancé(e) have physically met in person at least once within the 2-year period before you file your petition. USCIS can grant an exception to this requirement under certain circumstances, such as a religious prohibition to meet in person.  
  7. You can prove that you meet the minimum income requirements. 

How Long Does a K-1 Visa Application Take?  

The time to get approval and process a K-1 visa varies. In 2019, K-1 visa application cases take on average 6 to 9 months from the time USCIS receives the I-129F fiancé visa application until the K-1 visa is embossed onto the foreign fiancee’s passport and they have permission to enter the United States.  

Errors, missing documentation and other mistakes can delay your immigration visa application. Working with an experienced immigration lawyer can prevent costly mistakes and delays in processing your K-1 visa.  

Unmarried Children of K-1 Visa Applicants 

Eligible children of K-1 visa applicants can receive a K-2 visa. If you receive a K-1 fiance visa to enter the U.S. and get married, your unmarried children under the age of 21, whether or not they are the biological children of your U.S. citizen fiancé, may be eligible to accompany you to the United States, and be given a K-2 visa. 

The fiance’s children apply for K-2 visas based on their parent’s Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé and must be on same the petition. Separate visa applications must be submitted for each K-2 visa applicant, and each applicant must pay the K visa application fee. 

You are not required to hire an attorney to help you apply for a K-1 visa, but an experienced immigration attorney can help you manage the immigration process and save you time and money.

The Immigration Simplified attorneys work with you to evaluate your immigration status and guide you in your journey to becoming a US citizen. If you need help with an immigration issue, please contact our office or call us at (312) 883-9944.

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