Hire a Lawyer to Help You Navigate the K1 Visa Timeline
What Is the K1 Visa?
A K1 fiance visa allows a foreign partner entry into the U.S. to marry a United States citizen. The fiance visa allows entry into the country so partners can marry, but after the marriage, you need to submit a new application to secure permanent residence for your foreign partner. Keep in mind, this process is not the same as U.S. citizenship.
To obtain the K1 visa, you have to jump through a few hoops, but this is something our qualified attorneys can help you navigate.
These are the general steps to obtain a K1 fiance visa:
- The U.S. citizen must petition the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
- After receiving approval, the foreign partner must complete the K1 visa process, which includes documentation to the local embassy, interviews, and a medical examination.
We offer more info on the process, but depending on your foreign partner’s native country, you may have additional requirements. Get in touch with us for a personal consultation.
K1 Fiance Visa Process
The K1 fiance visa process has two sections. First, the petitioner (the United States citizen) must file materials within the United States. Then, the process moves to the beneficiary’s (the foreign partner) country’s embassy. Keep in mind, this is going to be different from tradition immigration processes.
Filing the K1 Fiance Visa Petition
Filing a petition is the first step in acquiring the K1 fiance visa. The partner from the United States handles this portion of the visa process:
- The petitioner (the U.S. citizen) submits a petition for the beneficiary (the foreign partner) to the USCIS.
- They then need to submit the Form I-129F Petition for Alien Fiance, G-325A Biographic Information, fees, and any additional required documentation (consult a lawyer on this part) to the USCIS.
- The petitioner receives a Notice of Action that acknowledges the receipt of the petition.
- The petitioner later receives another Notice of Action that acknowledges the petition’s approval.
- The USCIS Service Center forwards the petition to the National Visa Center.
- The National Visa Center processes the petition and runs a background check on the beneficiary.
- If the background check presents no problems, the National Visa Center forwards the approved petition to the beneficiary’s embassy (listed in the I-129F).
Acquiring the K1 Fiance Visa
Once the petitioner completes the process of filing for the K1 fiance visa, the petitioner’s country takes care of the rest:
- The beneficiary’s local American embassy receives the file and processes it.
- The beneficiary receives instructions to go to her or his local American embassy for an interview and medical check and to provide any additional documentation (some require immediate sending while the beneficiary can bring others to the interview).
- The Embassy sends a letter to the beneficiary with a date and time for the interview.
- The beneficiary attends a medical interview.
- The beneficiary attends a visa interview to answer questions and review documents.
- Approved visa applications issue that same day or within the week.
- Upon approval, the beneficiary can enter the United States on a K1 fiance visa.
K1 Fiance Visa Timeline
Generally speaking, the process of acquiring a K1 fiance visa can be a time-consuming process. The visa timeline often proves very foggy and depends on current national and international politics, as well as on the volume of requests being made.
For this reason, the best practice is to work with a lawyer to better ensure the correct writing and filing of all materials. This ensures that the process happens as quickly and smoothly as possible.
Receiving NOA of Receipt: Two to Three Weeks After Filing
The petitioner submits materials to the appropriate USCIS center. A few weeks pass before the petitioner receives the Form I-797, which is the first Notice of Action from the USCIS and acknowledges the receipt of the petition.
Approval of Petition: Five to Seven Months After Filing
After approximately five to seven months (or longer, depending on processing times), the petitioner receives a second Notice of Action, which acknowledges the petition’s approval. This period takes the longest because the State Department needs to investigate the relationship between the U.S. national and foreign partners.
National Visa Center Action: Four to Six Weeks After Petition Approval
The National Visa Center then forwards the file to the foreign partner’s local American Embassy.
Embassy Letter for Interview: Approximately Two Weeks After Embassy Receives Case
Once the embassy receives and has a chance to review the case, the foreign partner receives a letter that provides interview instructions and additional necessary materials.
K1 Visa Interview: Two to Eight Weeks After Submitting Documents
A scheduled interview takes place around two to eight weeks after the beneficiary submits the required documents to the embassy. At the interview or within the week, the visa receives approval or a denial.
Entry Into the United States: Zero to Six Months After Visa Approval
Finally, upon approval of the K1 fiance visa, the beneficiary has up to six months to enter the United States with the visa.
Work With an Experience Local Lawyer
On the whole, the K1 visa timeline and application is long and grueling. It can be incredibly confusing to navigate and painful at times when several months can pass without an update. Things like scandal and divorce soon after can complicate the lives of everyone involved.
Work with one of our experienced attorneys to help you navigate the immigration process. This ensures that you have someone to ask questions to. No more scouring the internet only to find conflicting information.
Get in touch with one of our expert lawyers to save yourself time and mistakes. Get your fiance into the United States as smoothly and as soon as possible.
Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in your area!