How Does the K-1 Fiance Visa Work?
There are numerous different visas to allow immigrants to enter the United States legally. Today, we’ll talk about the K-1 visa, aka the Fiance Visa. The K-1 visa allows a U.S citizen to bring their future spouse into the country legally provided that the couple weds within 90 days of the fiance(e)’s arrival in the United States.
The fiance visa is particularly useful in situations in which the U.S. citizen and their foreign spouse-to-be cannot marry in the foreign country, even though marriage in the United States could take place without an issue. There are foreign countries that still require the approval of parents for adult children to marry, while others prohibit individuals of different religions to be married. Thus, the fiance visa allows U.S. citizens to legally bring their betrothed into the United States for purposes of marriage.
The process is started when the U.S. citizen files a Petition for Alien Fiance(e) along with an Affidavit of Support (I-134). It is important to note that the U.S. citizen and the foreign fiance must have seen each other in person within the two years prior to the filing. There are very rare situations where an exception to this rule is granted. This is intended to prevent sham marriages between Americans and foreigners who are only seeking U.S. citizenship. If the couple is unable to provide evidence that they have met during the last two years, they may be subject to a Request for Evidence as to their relationship.
Grant of the petition does not produce the visa. Once the petition is granted, it is sent to the embassy in the foreign country of the fiance(e). The embassy will then reach out to the fiance(e) to schedule a medical examination and interview at the embassy of the fiance(e). The fiance(e) will then present themselves to the embassy with any documentation that is required and be prepared for the interview. The purpose of the documentation is to show that a valid romantic relationship exists between the U.S. citizen and the foreign fiance(e).
Acceptable documentation can include photographs showing the couple together, letters, correspondence, phone bills, or remittances between the two parties. The embassy staff will also ask questions of the foreign fiance(e) to further establish that there is a valid romantic relationship. The U.S. citizen petitioner must also provide documentation to show that their fiance(e) is unlikely to become a public burden.
If the embassy officer determines that the relationship is legitimate, they will grant the petition. If the embassy officer finds that the parties have manufactured a relationship or there are serious questions as to the legitimacy of the relationship, the application will be marked for denial and no visa will be issued.
How ZafiroLaw Can Help
If you are looking to obtain a K1 visa for your loved one, the first step is to find knowledgeable and experienced counsel who can help you through the process and avoid the common pitfalls. You will want to contact the attorneys at ZafiroLaw at 206-547-9906 or online today!