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K-1 Fiancé Visa Lawyer

K-1 Fiancé Visa


As a U.S. citizen, you may apply for a K-1 Fiancé(e) Visa to bring your foreign national fiancé(e) to the U.S. in order to get married. The K-1 visa is valid for 90 days and you are required to finalize your marriage within this period.

A fiancé(e) visa is solely for the purpose of marrying your foreign national fiancé(e). The fiancé(e) visa permits a stay of 90 days in the U.S. and is not renewable. After your marriage is finalized, you must petition for your foreign national spouse to obtain permanent residence (green card) through a process called adjustment of status.

If you do not marry your foreign national fiancé(e) within the allotted 90-day period, the K-1 fiancé(e) visa holder will lose lawful status and begin accruing unlawful presence after the 90-day stay has expired. Accruing unlawful presence may lead to a future bar to re-enter the U.S. for a period of 3 or 10 years, depending on the amount of unlawful presence incurred.

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Green Card Through Marriage

Fiancé(e): K-1 Visa

Your U.S. fiancé(e) may apply for a K-1 visa which allows you to enter the U.S. for a period of 90 days.

Green Card Through Employment

Specialty Workers: H-1B Visa

The H-1B visa allows non-U.S. workers to temporarily work in the U.S. in a specialty occupation, requiring a higher degree or equivalent work experience.

Other Workers: H-2B Visa

The H-2B visa provides an opportunity for skilled or unskilled non-U.S. workers to work in the U.S. on a temporary or seasonal basis.

Trader/Investor Visa: E-1/E-2 Visa

The Treaty Trade or Investor visa provides nationals of selected countries with whom the U.S. has a treaty or other agreement to enter the U.S. to engage in international trading or investment activities.

Intracompany Transfer: L-1A/L-1B Visa

L-1A and L-1B visas enable U.S. employers to transfer employees from foreign affiliated offices, who either work in managerial positions or have specialized knowledge.

Visitor (tourist/business): B-1/B-2 Visa

Individuals who would like to enter the U.S. for tourism, medical treatment or a business trip may apply for a B/1 or B/2 visa.

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Eligibility Requirements for K-1 Fiancé(e) Visas

To qualify for the K-1 fiancé(e) visa, the parties must:

  • Be legally able to marry.
  • Have intent to marry each other within 90 days after the K-1 visa holder is admitted to the U.S.
  • Have met in person within two years prior to filing for the fiancé(e) visa.

A waiver of the meeting-in-person requirement is available and may be approved if you show that it either violates strict and long-established customs associated with your fiancé(e)’s foreign cultural or social practices or meeting in person would otherwise result in extreme hardship to the U.S. citizen petitioner.


The U.S. citizen petitioner must meet certain income guidelines, based upon the Federal Poverty Guidelines, to successfully petition for the K-1 fiancé(e) visa. If the petitioner is unable to meet the income guidelines, a co-sponsor may join the application in order to make up for the income deficiency. Alternatively, certain assets of the petitioning U.S. citizen may be utilized to fulfill the income requirement.

Sponsorship Liability

Note that if the person the U.S. citizen is sponsoring becomes a public charge, the agency that provides assistance may be able to sue the sponsor to recover the cost of the assistance, pursuant to section 213 of the Immigration Nationality Act (INA).

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Permission to Work

The K-1 holder may immediately apply for permission to work in the U.S. upon arrival. The employment authorization would only be valid for the same 90-day K-1 visa period. Alternatively, once the parties are married, the foreign national spouse may obtain employment authorization during the adjustment of status to permanent residency.

Derivative Beneficiaries

Your fiancé(e)’s children, unmarried and under 21 years of age, are able to come to the U.S. along with your fiancé(e). They are considered derivative beneficiaries and should be included on the same petition. They may enter the U.S. at the same time as your fiancée or at a later time, but not before your fiancé(e) enters.


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