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US Marriage and Fiancee Visas : US Visas
US Marriage and Fiancee Visas
The K class and IR visas are for foreign nationals who are
1) wed to a US citizen or
2) engaged to be wed to a US citizen and are seeking permanent residence within the United States as a spouse.
The K class visa also covers unmarried dependents under the age of 21 who wish to reside with their parent in the US.
K-1 Visa, Fiancée of a US CitizenA foreign national wishing to wed a US citizen may apply for a K-1 visa. Both parties must be free to be lawfully married; i.e.,
1) they are both of legal age and
2) neither one is married to each other or anyone else.
As of this writing, same-sex partners are not eligible for K-1 visas, even if the US citizen member of the couple resides in a state that recognizes same-sex marriage. Additional requirements include:
K-2 Visa, Children of FiancéeUnmarried children under the age of 21 years are eligible to immigrate with their parent under the K-2 visa. Under K-2, these children (known as derivative children) may accompany their parent immediately or wait to join them for up to one year after the issue of the K-1 visa.
K-3 and K-4, Spouse of a US Citizen and ChildrenThe K-3 is a non-immigrant visa which allows the foreign spouse of a US citizen the opportunity to come to the US under non-immigrant status. Once in the US, the K-3 holder may then change their status to immigrant. The K-4 is the derivative visa issued to the children of a K-3 holder.
IR Visa, Spouse of a US CitizenThe IR is similar to the K-2, with the exception that the holder receives immediate immigration status.
According to US Immigration law, a spouse is a legally-wedded husband or wife. (Currently, the law does not recognize same-sex partnerships as legal marriage.) Common-law spouses living in countries which recognize common-law marriage may qualify, but this is not necessarily the case. In cases of polygamy, only the first spouse is eligible for IR immigration. In order to bring a foreign spouse into the US, the US citizen must file a Petition for Alien Relative (Form I-130) with the USCIS field office that serves the area in which you live. Once approved, the petitioner can then apply for an IR visa.
There is no minimum age requirement for IR immigration; however there is a housing requirement. All US petitioners must provide a Form I-864 Affidavit of Support which requires that they have a domicile (residence) in the US.
Specific documentation varies based upon the type of visa being applied for, but here are some examples of things you may be asked to provide. Clear photocopies are acceptable in some cases, in others, the original will be required:
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