10 K-1 Fiancé Visa Myths Debunked

10 Sep 2014

Fiance Visa Myths Debunked

Myth 1: “The K-1 Visa process is only about filling in forms.”

K-1 Visa cases can become very complex. A single misstep in filling out your K-1 Visa petition can cause delays or may even cause your petition to be denied. A federal government form is a very serious document and a single misrepresentation may have severe penalties and repercussions. Starting the process with RapidVisa is the best way to safely navigate the current visa process.

Myth 2: “You can get a tourist visa for your fiancé.”

It is very difficult to obtain a tourist visa for most foreign nationals and entering the United States on a tourist visa with the intent of staying is visa fraud. This can and often does lead to deportation and a bar from reentering the United States.

Note however, that your fiancé can come here on a tourist visa and marry you. But she will have to leave before her tourist visa expires and apply for a spousal visa from outside the United States. It is the intent to stay that is illegal, not the marriage. A person who enters the U.S. with no intent to get married and stay who, while visiting, spontaneously decides to marry and attempt to stay may be able to do so. However, you must convince the government that this was not your intent all along.

Myth 3: “You should just go to the United States on a tourist visa and get married there to circumvent the immigration process.”

A tourist or visitor visa allows a foreign citizen to travel to the U.S. port-of-entry and request permission to enter the United States. You should be aware that a visa does not guarantee entry into the U.S. The immigration officials at the port-of-entry have authority to permit or deny admission to the U.S. If they suspect that you are attempting to immigrate to the United States on a tourist visa, they have the authority to deny you admission. If you do enter the United States on a tourist visa and get married, you may still encounter difficulties when you attempt to adjust your status to become a legal permanent resident and you risk deportation.

Myth 4: “Visa applicants will be grilled at the embassy interview.”

For the most part, Embassy interviews are routine unless there is a serious outstanding issue, most will pass the interview. However, Consular Officers ask more difficult questions or request additional evidence if they do not believe the intent to marry is real or the relationship is not bona fide or legitimate.

Myth 5: “Applying for a fiancé (e) visa, even though we are already married, is quicker and easier.”

If you are already married, you are not eligible for a K-1 Fiancé Visa. You must be legally able to marry in order to qualify for the K-1 Fiancé Visa. You must apply for the appropriate visa category (CR-1 or IR-1 visa). If you attempt to apply for the wrong visa category, you may jeopardize your right to immigrate to the United States or possibly delay the processing of your case.

Myth 6: “The visa applicant must show sufficient funds in her/his bank account to support her/his visa application.”

This may be true of non-immigrant visas, such as student and business visas. With a K-1 visa, the issue is the financial ability of the petitioner and not of the visa applicant.

Myth 7: “Once you enter the U.S. on a fiancé visa, you are Lawful Permanent Resident.”

If you enter the U.S. on a fiancé visa, you must marry within 90 days. If you do not, you must leave the United States. Otherwise, you will be in violation of U.S. Immigration Law and subject to deportation. After your marriage, you may apply for Lawful Permanent Residence. However, before that time, you are not a Lawful Permanent Resident.

Myth 8: “You must use an immigration attorney to file for a K-1 Fiancé Visa.”

Obtaining a U.S. visa is an administrative and not a legal process. This is simply a benefit request from your government, kind of like getting a driver’s license. No attorney has any type of special access to the process or can in any way give you an advantage if you are otherwise qualified. You will either qualify or you will not and no attorney or anybody else can change the facts of your situation. There is no judge or court involved, just a bunch of forms you send to a government office (USCIS).

Myth 9: “You must use the K-1 Fiancé Visa within 90 days.”

The K-1 visa is usually valid for 6 months and allows you to enter the United States only one time. The K-1 petition approval, from the USCIS, is valid for 4 months, which means the visa must be issued within 4 months of your USCIS approval. However, the consular officer can extend the USCIS approval for another 4 months and will routinely do this if it is not the fault of the applicant in delaying the process. Once the fiancé arrives in the U.S., the couple must get married within 90 days. This 90 day period cannot be extended.

Myth 10: “Children do not have to attend the embassy interview.”

If children are included in the petition and seeking a K-2 visa, they must attend the interview with you. This includes newborns. They will also be required to have the medical exam.


Disclaimer: The contents of this post were accurate to the best of our knowledge at the time of publishing. Immigration is constantly changing, and old information often becomes outdated, including procedures, timelines, prices, and more. Take note of the publish date. For archival purposes, these posts will remain published, even if new information renders them obsolete. Do not make important life decisions based on this content. No part of this post should be considered legal advice, as RapidVisa is not a law firm. This content is provided free of charge for informational purposes only. If anything herein conflicts with an official government website, the official government website shall prevail.

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