Working on Your K-1 Visa Application
Foreign nationals may obtain legal permanent resident status through different ways, such as the national interest waiver or alien investor program. Some, however, seek permanent residency through getting married to a US citizen or legal permanent resident.
The Fiance Visa or K-1 visa is necessary if a United States citizen wants to bring and marry their fiancé to the United States. However, what would seem like simple mistakes could lead to a denial of your visa or green card application. Legal counsel from trusted immigration law firms can help increase your chances of getting approved. Call us today and seek legal advice from top-tier New Jersey immigration lawyers.
This article will focus on fiance visas. It is composed of seven sections, as seen below:
- Two Basic Types of Visa
- The US Visas the Immigration Process
- Marriage Green Cards and the Visa Bulletin
- Financial Requirements for US Citizen Fiance
- Preparing for Your K-1 Visa Application
- The K-1 Fiance Visa Interview
- A Local Attorney from the Right Law Office
Two Basic Types of Visa
A US visa is usually a stamp in a passport, which is presented upon entering the United States. Green cards, on the other hand, are obtained after arrival.
Applying for immigrant visas
This type of visa must be obtained before traveling but is already part of the immigration process of getting a green card. Essentially, it allows a visa holder to both travel and reside in the United States permanently.
While an immigrant US visa is a vital part of your green card application, it is essential to remember that they do not provide resident status themselves. They do not automatically make the bearer a green card holder.
Applying for non-immigrant visas
Non-immigrant visa holders can enter the United States for specific purposes, such as travel, medical treatment, business, temporary work, or education. These temporary documents do not come with permanent residence in the country.
Non-immigrant visas have a set validity, and the foreign national may stay in the country for a set period. Technically speaking, non-immigrant visa holders are generally not eligible to get a green card. However, while the K-1 visa is considered non-immigrant, one can eventually get a green card after getting married.
The US Immigration Process
Individuals of a different nationality who wish to immigrate and become lawful permanent residents must be familiar with consular processing or adjustment of status. Your immigration status will determine largely what you can and cannot do after passing through a port of entry to the United States. A competent local attorney will know what visa types are available to you and guide you as you fill out USCIS forms and paperwork.
When working on your K-1 visa, well-trained and knowledgeable New Jersey fiance visa lawyers can help make sure that your immigration forms and supporting documents are complete and correctly filled out. On top of checking your immigration forms, they can also prepare you for your immigration interview and prevent errors that could lead to removal proceedings or, given the worst-case scenario, deportation to your home country.
Marriage Green Cards and the Visa Bulletin
The processing wait time for a green card application is practically longer for countries whose annual demand goes beyond country caps. The visa bulletin, which the US Department of State publishes, provides an updated waiting list for immigrants under the quota system, such as India, China, Mexico, and the Philippines.
Essentially, there are separate green card lines and backlogs for citizens of these countries, depending on the actual green card category. Marriage-based green card applications, however, are generally exempt from the country cap. Regardless of their country of origin, spouses of US citizens may apply for a green card as soon as their I-130 petition is approved.
Having a future spouse come to the country on a fiancé visa for the marriage to take place has advantages and advantages. So does getting married outside the United States and having a US citizen spouse sponsor the foreign spouse for a green card through family-based immigration. As such, many couples think thoroughly about when and where to get married, given their actual circumstances.
Financial Requirements for US Citizen Fiance
Before flying in on a K-1 and eventually getting a green card through marriage, your US citizen fiance must have sufficient assets and income to support you at the required level. The US immigration laws of 1996 outline financial requirements for citizens of the United States to help their fiance apply for a green card.
A Form I-864 Affidavit of Support must be filled out, proving the citizen’s ability to support the immigrant at a level exceeding the US Poverty Guidelines. In general, US citizens must promise the government to keep their non-citizen spouse for approximately ten years. As such, before proceeding, it is best to reach out to a credible legal professional who knows the ins and outs of the immigration service.
The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS Office) carefully evaluates all applications from foreigners who wish to enter the country, either temporarily or permanently. Learning about the requirements for each type of immigrant and nonimmigrant visas is crucial for you to get approval and push through with your plans.
Preparing for Your K-1 Visa Application
Any foreign national with plans of immigrating, obtaining permanent residency, or proceeding with an application for citizenship in the United States must first be familiar with basic immigration policy. Whether you are close to obtaining a green card or are still planning your immigrant or nonimmigrant visa application, it is highly recommended to get the legal services of an established local attorney.
The cost for a K-1 visa can range from $1,200 to $5,000. This would include government fees, the medical exam, and legal assistance.
Processing time for a K-1 visa petition
you must submit several immigration forms and supporting documents to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. All these, however, will be closely evaluated and examined. USCIS processing times are seldom short, so it is best to ensure that your visa application is complete the first time you submit it.
At present, the processing time for Form I-129F – Petition for Alien Fiance is around eight to ten months. Excluded here are four to six for a visa interview notice. This, however, could be longer for those coming from countries with extended processing times due to conflicts, disasters, or local embassy workload. Requests for Evidence (RFE) can also extend the processing time.
The K-1 Fiance Visa Interview
Within a K-1 fiancé visa application, the immigration officer will generally test whether the intended marriage is real. They will probably start by asking general questions, such as how you and your US citizen or permanent resident fiancé met. Questions on when you got engaged, and they will likely ask details about visits and other correspondence for the past two years.
Under family immigration laws, it is crucial to prove that the marriage is bona fide. The officer could ask about the ceremony, such as the number of guests who attended the ceremony and how correspondence took place when spouses were apart.
Some visa applications may require further administrative processing. If you are asked to provide additional documentation or evidence before an approval or denial can be made, make sure to comply and submit the supporting documents as soon as possible.
A Local Attorney from the Right Law Office
A foreign national may immigrate to the country, become a green card holder, and obtain citizenship papers by getting married to a United States citizen. However, It is essential to keep in mind that even lawful permanent residents may be deported for non-compliance with immigration rules. A typical example would be an individual who could get a green card through marriage but was found guilty of marriage fraud. As such, it is best to promptly seek legal help from people who can explain this in more detail.
If you wish to know how spouses and family members of United States citizens may apply for a green card and permanent residence, or if you have questions about your K-1 visa status, getting a green card through marriage, or applying for naturalization, call our New Jersey immigration law firm.
Contact us at Andres Mejer Law and consult with a seasoned New Jersey K-1 visa lawyer who will look closely into your case.