K-1 Visas- How to Bring Your Fiance to the United States

 

In this guide, we are going to dive into how to bring your fiance to the United States, legally, relatively quickly, and with the outcome we all want – A long and happy marriage to your Foreign National loved one.

 

For the purposes of this guide, let’s assume the following: You’ve popped the question to your significant other, and the response was “yes”! You have decided to get married in a large wedding, to live together forever in love and harmony, in sickness and in health.   You met in Argentina while studying during your semester abroad, but when your studies came to an end, you sadly said goodbye and returned to the United States. You promised to bring your fiance to the United States as quickly as possible.

 

You have researched the various ways to effectively carry out your plans. You have “Googled” the issue and you have spoken to several friends in a similar position. Bingo! The K-1 Visa is the answer.

 

You have the most important requirements covered. One: you are a United States citizen; two, you and your fiance have met in person during the past two years; and three, you are both of legal capacity to marry because you are both of the age of eighteen (18) and are not currently married.

 

What you need to be aware of when petitioning for your Foreign National fiance

 

You must file the proper form with a filing fee and prove the genuine nature of your relationship. Honesty is the best policy.  It must be authentic!   In particular, you must provide documentary evidence regarding your contact with your fiance during the past two years and proof that you and your fiance have the intention to live in a legal marital relationship.

 

Once you file the paperwork along with the Petition (I-129F), you will either receive a Request for Additional Evidence (RFE) or you will be approved by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). If you receive an RFE, additional documents must be obtained and submitted, before your I-129F is approved.

 

The first milestone having been achieved, the National Visa Center (NVC) will take over the process to facilitate the transfer of your Petition and paperwork to the United States Consulate in Argentina.  You will receive a letter from the NVC advising you of the requirements.

Your fiance in Argentina will need to complete “Form DS-160” which is an on-line Nonimmigrant Visa application.  Documentation must be submitted including evidence of a medical examination and police clearance letter. Your fiance will then attend an interview at the United States Consulate.

 

At the interview, the consular officer will focus questioning on your interpersonal relationship as well as visa eligibility. As the United States citizen petitioner, you may attend the interview along with your fiance.  Although the interview may seem daunting, generally consular officers are not there to make either party anxious or miserable. Keep in mind, though, that they see dozens of individuals every day attempting to enter the United States for one reason or another. Make sure you have the required documents, and you are organized! Make sure that your answers are consistent. For example, if the application says your mother-in-law is from Buenos Aires and then during the interview, you tell the consular officer, she is from Lima, that is a big red flag.

 

If you are successful, your fiance may be given the visa at the end of the interview, or the passport containing the approved K-1 Visa may be received in the mail. However, please be aware of this! You may not want to buy your fiance a plane ticket or set the exact wedding date unless you are prepared to lose a lot of money. Timing is often unpredictable and at this point, the United States Consulate can take several weeks before sending the approved K-1 Visa or may ask for additional evidence.

 

Once the K-1 Visa is approved, your fiance will enter the United States and you must be married within ninety (90) days. This is a very firm deadline! Under normal circumstances, the ninety-day period cannot be extended, and your fiance will not be eligible for another type of  US Visa without departing the country. If the two of you have a change of heart, your former fiance will not be permitted to stay in the United States.

 

CONCLUSION

 

To recap:  a K1 Fiance Visa is a nonimmigrant visa that allows a United States citizen to bring a Foreign National to the United States for the purpose of marriage. The marriage must take place within ninety (90) days of entry and there must be documentary evidence to prove the intentions of the applicants. You and your fiance must have met in person during the last two years and must be legally eligible to be married. You must fully intend to live together in a legal marriage relationship.

 

As there are many obstacles that you and your Foreign National fiance may encounter as you navigate through the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, retaining an attorney is always a good idea. I thank you for taking the time to read this blog and urge you to watch our podcasts for more information. I wish the best of luck to you and your loved one. In my experience, great preparation and assistance from a qualified attorney often leads to a great outcome.

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K-1 Visas- How to Bring Your Fiance to the United States
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    Aakarsh & Shraddha
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