There are many citizens of the United States who become engaged to a person who is not a citizen. Often times when this happens, they want to bring their fiance into the country to continue their life together. It is important to know that a person’s non-citizen fiance cannot simply enter the country because they are engaged. Instead, they are required to obtain a specific visa in order to get married and live in the United States. This is known as a K-1 visa. When applying for a visa, it can be beneficial to retain the services of an experienced immigration attorney for guidance. 

What is a K-1 Visa?

A K-1 Visa, otherwise known as a fiance visa, allows an immigrant to come to the country to marry and stay in the country. Once the visa is awarded, the fiance must be married within 90 days of coming to the United States. If they do not, they have 30 days to leave. After the marriage, the immigrant can apply to adjust their status to put them on the path to becoming a permanent resident through a Green Card.

Am I Qualified?

There are certain qualifications an immigrant must meet in order to apply for a fiance visa. This includes the following: 

  • The couple must have met at least two years before they file for the visa. 
  • They must provide evidence of their relationship. This can include pictures together, copies of correspondence, financial support evidence, phone records, and more. 
  • A background check on the fiance requires a name and fingerprint check.

It is important to know that the citizen petitioning for the visa may be asked to provide additional evidence. This requires the petitioner to meet or exceed 100% of the United States poverty guidelines to show that they meet income requirements to support them both.

What is the Process?

A petition approval does not necessarily mean the visa will be granted. During this time, the fiance must go through an interview and medical examination. The interview exists to determine if the fiance should be let into the country. Some things that may be evaluated can include: 

  • If the fiance knows information about their fiance, including their family, past relationships or marriages, employment, etc.
  • If the fiance is interested in the citizen they plan to marry and are serious about the marriage
  • If the fiance has good moral character

Contact our Firm

The Law Offices of Cheryl R. David practices immigration law throughout NYC. If you have questions about your particular matters regarding immigration please contact the office to discuss your circumstances and options.