Before marrying abroad consider the K1 visa
If you’re a United States citizen and you want to marry a foreign national you can petition for the foreign national with a k1 visa petition. A k-1 visa can be a fast way to bring you fiance to the United States, rather than marrying them abroad and filing for them as your spouse. The K-1 visa is a hybrid immigrant/non-immigrant visa that the US Consulate issues to your fiancee so she can marry you here in the United States within 90 days of admission and apply for a green card (i.e. permanent resident status) following the marriage.
A k1 fiance visa petition must first be filed by the US citizen
The foreign national doesn’t file the K-1 petition. You the US citizen is the petitioner, and you file it on her behalf. In the petition you can also petition for the minor children of the fiance to accompany or follow your fiancee. Once the petition is granted, the case is transferred to the US Consulate for your fiancee to apply for a K1 visa and be interviewed by a Consular officer.
Consequences of failing to marry after admission on a k1 visa
Upon entering the United States, the marriage must occur within 90 days, otherwise the foreign national must leave the country within 30 days. Should the foreign national marry somebody else, or if the marriage doesn’t take place within 90 days, the visa lapses, and he or she must leave the country. Upon entering into a legal marriage with you, the foreign national can begin the process of applying for employment authorization and a green card. If your marriage is not concluded within 90 days, your fiancee is required to leave the United States.
K-1 visa requirements
You need to be able to prove that you’ve personally met each other within the last two years. A meeting online is not enough. There must be a meeting in the flesh, so to speak. Be prepared to produce time stamped photos or videos, airline tickets, hotel receipts, phone records and other supporting evidence. This evidence must accompany the K-1 petition. The petition and all supporting documentation must be accurate. The petitioner and the foreign national must both be eligible to marry. As the petitioner, you’re required to show that neither you nor the foreign national are likely to become a public charge. You’ll need to submit evidence to the effect that you’re above the poverty line in your state. The K1 visa holder has typically six months (or shorter) to travel to the United States (use it or lose it).
The International Marriage Broker Regulation Act requires petitioners that have been convicted of specified crimes involving violence and/or drug crimes to disclose them on their K-1 visa petition. Confusion also exists with disclosures as to whether the couple met through a marriage broker. Dating sites are not marriage broker sites. The Adam Walsh Act also governs K-1 petitions. If you’ve been convicted of a sex crime involving children, you’re not eligible to file a K-1 petition for the benefit of a foreign national.
Same sex fiance K1 visas
Recent federal appellate decisions that permit same sex marriage imply allowing same sex or transsexual K-1 visa issuance. That shouldn’t be an issue if everything else is in order. The K-1 visa process is highly detailed. All information on the petition must be perfectly accurate and accompanied by supporting documentation. An embassy or consulate interview will follow along with the required medical exam.
For best results use an experienced K1 visa lawyer
The K1 visa process can be challenging. It is best to put the matter into the hands of a competent k1 visa lawyer rather than engage in self-help or use a cheap service that cannot represent you before USCIS and US consulates when things do not go according to plan. K1 visas sometimes do not go according to plan. Goodin Law P.A., immigration and k1 visa lawyers have an excellent track record in obtaining K1 visas for fiances of US citizens. If you have any questions call our k1 visa attorney at 702-423-2721 to schedule a consultation to determine eligibility for the K1 visa or its alternatives.