The K-1 Nonimmigrant Visa is for U.S. Citizens to facilitate the entry of their Fiancé or Fiancée to the United States to conclude a valid marriage. The process requires the U.S. Citizen to file a petition with U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS). Upon petition approval, the Fiancé(e) is required to appear for a visa interview at the U.S. Embassy/Consulate in their home country. Important facts about the K-1 Visa classification include the following:
1. Prior Meeting: The U.S. Citizen and Fiancé(e) must prove that they have previously met in person at least once within two years of filing the K-1 petition, with few exceptions.
2. Ninety (90) Days: The marriage must be concluded within 90 days of the Fiancé(e)’s entry into the U.S. Otherwise, the Fiancé(e) is required to depart the U.S. or will be subject to deportation/removal proceedings.
3. Prohibition: The Fiancé(e) is NOT eligible to file for a Green Card on any other basis while in the U.S. on K-1 status other than through the marriage to the U.S. Citizen who filed the K-1 petition.
4. Change Status: The Fiancé(e) is NOT eligible to change to another nonimmigrant status from within the U.S. while in the U.S. on K-1 status.
5. Criminal History: USCIS may disclose any Criminal Record of the U.S. Citizen that would affect the health or safety of the Fiancé(e) or dependent children.
6. Children of Fiancé(e): Children under age 21 are eligible for K-2 Visas to accompany the Fiancé(e) to the U.S.
7. Green Card: Upon conclusion of the marriage within 90 days, the Spouse is eligible to file an application to obtain Lawful Conditional Residence (Green Card) in the U.S. for two years and thereafter Lawful Permanent Residence.
8. Employment Authorization: Once married, the Spouse is also eligible to file and obtain an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) to work in the U.S. while awaiting the processing of the Immigrant Visa (Green Card).
If you are interested in applying for a K-1 Visa, please schedule a Consultation with Serianni Law to discuss the legal requirements and filing procedures. Also, Contact Us for free initial information and pricing.