K-1 Fiance / Fiancee Visas
In order to be approved for a Fiance(e) visa to come to the US, the US Citizen must file a petition with the USCIS. Generally, to be eligible, Petitioner and K-1 beneficiary must establish that they are both free to marry; that they intend to marry each other within 90 days of the beneficiary’s entry into the United States and that they have met in person within the two years immediately preceding the filing of the petition.
The only exception to this requirement is where it can be established that compliance would result in extreme hardship to the petitioner or that compliance would violate strict and long-established customs of the K-1 beneficiary’s foreign culture or social practice, i.e., cultures where arranged marriages are the norm and where the spouses are prohibited from meeting before the wedding day. This exception is up to the discretion of the USCIS.
Once the petition is approved, it will be forwarded to the Embassy or Consulate having jurisdiction over the foreign fiancé(e)’s place of residence. After entering into a legally binding marriage within 90 days of his or her admission as a K-1 visa holder, the beneficiary and his or her minor children may apply to “adjust” their status to that of lawful permanent resident aka “green card holder.” K-1 visa holders are eligible to apply for employment authorization.