If your future spouse is a foreign national, you probably have a lot of questions about green cards, visas, and your ability to build a future together in the United States. As you plan your wedding, you’ll also want to consult with a fiancé visa lawyer at Solano Law Firm. We can help you understand your legal options and help ease the pressures of the immigration process. Keep reading to learn more about fiancé visas and green cards.
Does My Loved One Need a Fiancé Visa?
A fiancé visa, also called a K-1 visa, permits a foreign national who is engaged to a U.S. citizen enter and reside in the United States before the wedding. However, not every engaged couple needs to apply for a fiancé visa. Before you start the time-intensive K-1 visa application process, you should assess your situation and needs. Your fiancé does not need a K-1 visa if:
- They do not plan on living in the U.S. after your marriage
- You are not planning on getting married in the United States
- They already have a valid green card or visa, and can legally reside in the U.S.
Under these circumstances, your fiancé may have the option to apply for permanent residency after your wedding, using a different process. For more information, consult with a family immigration lawyer at Solano Law Firm. We can help you understand the full array of immigration options available to you.
However, if your future spouse lives outside the United States, does not have a valid visa, and wants to apply for legal permanent residency (green card), the first step in their immigration journey is a fiancé visa.
Who Qualifies for a Fiancé Visa?
The eligibility requirements for a K-1 visa are relatively broad. But it’s always a good idea to consult with a fiancé visa lawyer before you apply. This is especially true if your future spouse has ever been charged or convicted of a crime or U.S. immigration violation. U.S. immigration law is very complicated. An immigration lawyer may be able to help you avoid missteps that could cost your fiancé their visa or green card.
Your foreign national fiancé is typically eligible for a fiancé visa if you can show the following:
- You are a U.S. citizen;
- You and your fiancé plan on marrying within 90 days of their entry into the United States;
- In the past two years, the two of you physically met each other; and
- You both can legally marry each other in the U.S. (in other words, you are not currently married).
Any of your fiancé’s children who are under the age of 21 can also receive K-2 derivative visas if they intend to move to the U.S. Notably, legal permanent residents, DACA recipients, and other visa holders cannot request a K-1 visa for their loved ones.
How Do I Apply for My Fiancé’s K-1 Visa?
When you apply for a K-1 visa, your fiancé visa lawyer will help you complete a series of forms, including a Petition for Alien Fiancé (Form I-129(F)). You’ll also need to provide U.S. immigration authorities with evidence that supports your application. Your word alone will not be enough.
When you meet with a fiancé visa lawyer, they will need copies of your birth certificate or passport, documents relating to your wedding and relationship, and other documents. If you need help collecting these documents, a fiancé visa lawyer at Solano Law Firm can help.
In most cases, you will get a response within four to six months of applying for your fiancé’s visa. If it is approved, your fiancé will have to participate in an interview before their visa is issued. From submission to the receipt of your loved one’s visa, it typically takes less than a year to complete the K-1 application process.
If your application is denied, you should consult with your fiancé visa lawyer as soon as possible about your legal options.
Do I Really Need a Fiancé Visa Lawyer?
While U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) approves most fiancé visas, that doesn’t mean it’s an easy process. Immigration authorities carefully scrutinize every K-1 visa application, looking for signs of fraud and other concerns. A single typographical error, missed document, or mistake could result in a denied visa, red tape, and a lot of heartache.
When you work with a fiancé visa lawyer at the Solano Law Firm, we do our best to streamline your fiancé’s application process and educate you at every step. Our clients receive peace of mind, along with:
- Immigration forms that are completed and reviewed by experienced attorneys
- Practical and personalized advice from a team of knowledgeable immigration lawyers
- Help collecting evidence that supports your fiancé’s application
- Preparation for your fiancé’s immigration interview
- Emotional support during a stressful time
Planning a wedding is a lot of work. We’d love to take some of the immigration-related pressure off of you and your fiancé during this busy time in your life.
Schedule a Meeting With a Fiancé Visa Lawyer
If you’re ready to move forward with a K-1 visa application, it’s time to talk to a fiancé visa lawyer at Solano Law Firm. With offices in several states, we help our clients reunite with their loved ones. We assist families and individuals with their comprehensive immigration needs, including fiancé visas. To learn more, contact us today.