Home is where family is. For some, it is their parents, for others, it is their life partner. Interracial marriages are very common these days. You meet someone on the internet and the next thing you know is that you relate very much. It feels like you have found your soulmate.
A long-distance relationship might be a turn-off for many, but some see it as a way to strengthen their relationship. After the dating phase is over, and it comes to marrying the love of your life, people want to do wedding planning together. The problem arises if your finance lives abroad.
If this is the problem you are currently facing, you need not worry. The world has solved this problem too. Here we will discuss how can you go abroad to meet your fiancé and plan the wedding with them. Read through this article to know it all!
What is a k1 visa?
The k1 visa is a type of visa that is issued to the fiancé of a United States citizen. This visa allows them to enter the United States and get married to their fiancé within 90 days after which they have to leave the country.
After marrying a united states citizen, one can file for permanent citizenship of the United States of America. This application needs to be filed with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
You will be issued a k1 visa by the counselor’s office. They will give you your passport containing the k1 visa along with a packet containing all the documents you submitted. Here it is critical to learn that this packet of documents should only be opened by the DHS immigration official once you enter the United States and it should not be ripped or opened by you under any circumstances.
Cost of a k1 visa:
A k1 visa can cost around $1000. One has to fill out a form for the application process. This form is called Form I – 129 F and has a fee of $535. This amount can be paid online by credit card or by other means such as a money order, cashier’s cheque, or personal cheque.
Then comes the cost for the medical exam after approval of Form I – 129 F. the cost of the medical exam is around $200. Then comes the interview phase. When one goes for the interview at the embassy, $265 needs to be paid which is the actual k1 visa fee.
What is Form I – 129 F:
It is the first step when filing for the k1 visa. This form has a fee of $535 and is actually a petition being filed to the U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office. After they review and accept the petition, one can start the further process of attaining a k1 visa.
Documents required for the k1 visa:
Several documents are required when applying for a fiancé visa. Make sure you submit all the documents as required. The list of the documents required is given below:
Completed Form DS-160, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application:You (and any eligible children applying for K-2 visas) must complete Form DS-160 and print the DS-160 confirmation page to bring to your interview.
Passport:A passport valid for travel to the United States and with a validity date of at least six months beyond your intended period of stay in the United States (unless country-specific agreements provide exemptions).
Birth certificate:A computerized birth certificate should also be included in the submitted documents.
Divorce or death certificate:The divorce or death certificates are required in case of any previous spouse(s) for both you and the U.S. citizen sponsor.
Police certificates:These must be from your present country of residence and all countries where you have lived for six months or more since age 16 (Police certificates are also required for accompanying children age 16 or older). These are essential to make sure that you do not have any criminal record.
Medical examination:A medical certificate is essential and a record of all your vaccinations is also important. In the current scenario, a covid – 19 vaccination certificate along with a recent negative covid – 19 test is also essential.
Evidence of financial support:The documents summarizing your means of income are also necessary or the evidence of financial support in case you do not have a job. This is filled in Form I – 134.
Photographs:Two photographs in the 2 × 2 dimensions are required.
Evidence of relationship:This document is required for the confirmation of your relationship with your U.S. citizen fiancé(e).
Fee:The evidence of fee payment must also be provided. This will most likely be the paid fee receipt that you need to provide with the documents.
Eligibility criteria for the k1 visa:
A k1 visa is a sponsorship provided by a United States citizen for his / her fiancé. This gives them the right to stay in the United States for 90 days and get married. However, there are eligibility criteria that must be followed. It is mentioned below:
- The sponsoring partner must be a United States citizen. However, permanent United States citizens who are green card holders are not eligible to sponsor a fiancé for the k1 visa.
- Both partners must be eligible to marry which is to say that, both must be currently unmarried. Any prior divorce decrees, annulments, or death certificates must be provided to show that any previous marriages have been terminated.
- K-1 visas are available to same-sex partners, regardless of whether the laws in the sponsored fiancé’s home country allow for sex-same marriage.
- Documents must be provided that prove the legitimacy of the relationship. These can include; photographs, flight itineraries and/or hotel reservations of trips taken together as a couple, written statements from friends and colleagues who are aware of the engagement, letters or emails between the partners. This evidence will strengthen one’s case.
- The couple must be able to prove that they have met in person at least one time within the two years before filing the visa form (except for cases of extreme hardship, or where in-person meetings would violate cultural, religious, or social norms). Evidence may include flight itineraries, hotel itineraries, dated photos.
- Each partner must provide a signed statement indicating an intent to marry within 90 days of the sponsored fiancé’s arrival in the United States. If concrete wedding plans have been made, it is also a good idea to submit evidence such as wedding invitations, receipts of deposits on a venue.
- The U.S. citizen fiancé must meet certain income requirements. Specifically, the adjusted gross income on their most recent tax return must be equal to at least 100% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. If they are unable to meet this requirement alone, a joint financial sponsor must file a supplemental “affidavit of support.” To prove this, one needs to provide a document of financial assistance.
If your fiancé resides in the United States and you intend to marry there, you must first complete all the documentation and then start the filing process. If you fulfill the eligibility criteria, there is a very high chance of your case getting accepted and you being issued the k1 visa.
It is highly advisable to marry your fiancé as soon as you reach the United States. This way you can start filing for citizenship promptly and might even get it sooner than you think.