A K1 visa, also known as a fiancé visa, allows your partner to enter the United States as a nonimmigrant, if they’re willing to marry you within 90 days. After the marriage, they can then apply for a green card to become a permanent resident.
As with other visa categories, the K1 visa has specific eligibility criteria that must be met to qualify for approval. First, the sponsoring fiancé must be a U.S. citizen. Permanent residents or green card holders cannot sponsor their partners for a K1 visa. Other prerequisites for a fiancé visa include the following.
Proof of a bonafide relationship
You and your partner must prove that you have a genuine relationship and intend to tie the knot within 90 days of their arrival in the country. This entails presenting evidence of your relationship, such as photographs, communication records and testimony from friends and family attesting to the legitimacy of your relationship. You must also prove you have met your partner in person at least once within two years of applying for the visa, although some exceptions apply, allowing you to bypass this requirement.
You must be legally free to marry
Both you and your partner should not be currently married to someone else or in violation of any laws prohibiting marriage. This means you must be single, divorced, widowed or have had your previous marriage annulled.
You must demonstrate your ability to financially support your fiancé upon their arrival in the U.S. if they cannot do so themselves. You may be needed to provide financial evidence showing that you meet the minimum income threshold required by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
Admissibility to the U.S.
Your fiancé must pass a background check to ensure they do not have a criminal history that would render them inadmissible to the U.S. They must also undergo a medical examination by an approved physician to check for any health issues that would pose a health risk to the public.
It’s worth noting that obtaining a K1 visa can be complex and time-consuming due to the paperwork and procedures involved. Additionally, you may encounter some hurdles, like requests for additional evidence or delays in processing. Seeking legal guidance can help you navigate the process effectively and increase the chances of a successful outcome.