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More on the K-1 fiancee visa


A citizen of a foreign country who would like to come to the United States to marry an American citizen and reside in the U.S. will have to obtain a K-1 visa.




To establish K-1 visa classification for an alien fiancé(e), an American citizen must file a petition, Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé(e), with the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services in the Department of Homeland Security (BCIS) having jurisdiction over the place of the petitioner's residence in the United States. Such petitions may not be adjudicated abroad. The approved petition will be forwarded by BCIS to the American consular office where the alien fiancé(e) will apply for his or her visa. A petition is valid for a period of four months from the date of BCIS action, and may be revalidated by the consular officer.




Applicants who have a communicable disease, or have a dangerous physical or mental disorder; are drug addicts; have committed serious criminal acts, including crimes involving moral turpitude, drug trafficking, and prostitution; are likely to become a public charge; have used fraud or other illegal means to enter the United States; or are ineligible for citizenship, must be refused a visa. The two-year foreign residency requirement for former exchange visitors is also applicable. If found to be ineligible, the consular officer will advise the applicant if the law provides for a waiver.




The consular officer will notify the beneficiary when the approved petition is received and provide to the beneficiary the necessary forms and instructions to apply for a "K" visa. A fiancé(e) visa applicant is an intending immigrant and, therefore, must meet documentary requirements similar to the requirements of an immigrant visa applicant. The following documents are normally required:


-- Valid passport
-- Birth certificate
-- Divorce or death certificate of any previous spouse
-- Police certificate from all places lived since age 16
-- Medical examination
-- Evidence of support
-- Evidence of valid relationship with the petitioner
-- Photographs*

*Two photographs 1 and 1/2 inches square (37x37mm), showing full face, against a light background.




Both petitioner and beneficiary must be legally able and willing to conclude a valid marriage in the United States. The petitioner and beneficiary must have previously met in person within the past two years unless the Attorney General waives that requirement. As soon as the processing of a case is completed and the applicant has all necessary documents, a consular officer will interview the fiancé(e). If found eligible, a visa will be issued, valid for one entry during a period of six months. A non-refundable $100.00 application fee is collected.




The alien fiancé(e) must apply for work authorization with the BCIS. The marriage must take place within 90 days of admission into the United States. Following the marriage, the alien spouse must apply to the BCIS to establish a record of entry for conditional permanent residence status. After two years, the alien may apply to the BCIS for removal of the conditional status.




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