The primary eligibility criteria for a K-1 fiancé visa is a US citizenship. The petitioner has to be a US citizen. There is no eligibility if the petitioner is a permanent resident of United States.
What Documents Will We Need To Apply For The K-1 Fiancé Visa?
One of the very basic requirements for the fiancé visa is that both the petitioner and fiancé, who is abroad, should have met in person at least once within the previous two-year period. If you are applying for a K-1 fiancé visa, it has to be applied for at the US consulate abroad where your fiancé is residing. Once the application is approved, the fiancé is able to travel to the United States. If a couple cannot meet in person during the two-year period, there are very limited exceptions allowed if there are cultural or religious reasons. However, it takes a lot more to substantiate. Otherwise, the couple should have met in person.
How Long Will It Take For The K-1 Visa To Be Approved?
Prior to the pandemic, the usual timeline of approval for a K-1 visa was four to six months. The biggest challenge now is that most of the consulates abroad are closed. The reason couples apply for a K-1 visa is so that the fiancé can visit the United States and get married within the allowed 90-day timeframe. All things considered, the K-1 visa is a much quicker process compared to other petitions, such as the I-130. With the K-1 visa, the fiancé can come to the United States, get married within 90 days, and then apply for an adjustment of status.
What Are The Common Reasons That A K-1 Visa Would Be Denied?
A K-1 visa can get denied if it cannot substantiate the application. For instance, if the petitioners do not submit proof that they met in person, such as travel tickets and pictures, as well as proof of frequent communication that shows the longevity of the relationship, the application can be denied. The purpose of the fiancé visa is to get married in the US and the documents have to support the genuineness of the relationship. Each petition is case specific. It also depends on the country where the fiancé is coming from because there are many cultural follow ups that can happen before the wedding takes place. There could be cultural limitations before a wedding, such as how far the couple could have moved forward in a relationship.
As such, it would be necessary to try to convince the officer that the relationship is genuine and that the couple wants to get married. The purpose is not just for immigrating to the United States. That’s what needs to be substantiated.
What Happens If The K-1 Visa Is Denied? Should We Reapply Or Should We Appeal?
If the K-1 visa is denied, the next step will depend on the reason why the application was not approved. In some cases, it might be more feasible to drop the K-1 visa and get married abroad. That might be the easier route. Even though the proof of documents required is more substantial when it comes to an I-130, those documents can make the case stronger. However, it depends on the reason why the K-1 was denied. Once the reason is known, we can decide on the appropriate course of action.
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