There are various steps in the K-1 visa process. However, the journey can be divided into two major components, petitioning the fiancé for a visa and actually applying for the visa. Each has separate and unique K-1 visa requirements.
The U.S. citizen starts the process by filing a visa petition. Once approved, the foreign citizen fiancé may apply for the visa.
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Form I-129F Petition Requirements
The first step to obtaining a K-1 visa is for the U.S. citizen to file Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé. In addition to the actual Form I-129F, the U.S. citizen petitioner must also submit the following items as part of the package:
- USCIS Filing Fee
You must pay the petition fee at the time of filing. See the total K-1 visa costs >>
- Proof of U.S. Citizenship
You’ll need to submit a photocopy of your U.S. birth certificate, U.S. passport, naturalization certificate or other evidence of citizenship.
- Evidence that any Previous Marriages have been Terminated
In short, you must submit proof that your previous marriages (if any) have ended. A divorce decree or death certificate is sufficient.
- Passport-Style Photo
All petitioners must submit a photo of themselves take according to State Department standards for passport photos.
- Evidence of In-Person Meeting with Fiancé
You must prove that you have physically met your fiancé at least one time within the last two-year period. Online meetings do not count toward this requirement.
- Evidence of Intention to Marry
There must be evidence that the couple plans to get married within the 90-day window allowed by a K-1 visa based on a bona fide marriage.
Additional items may be required based on the petitioner’s answers in Form I-129F. For more detailed evidence, read evidence to submit with Form I-129F. When you prepare your petition through CitizenPath, we will generate personalized filing instructions based on your specific situation.
K-1 Visa Requirements
Once USCIS approves the I-129F petition, the U.S. Department of State will have additional K-1 visa requirements. USCIS will transfer the case to the National Visa Center (NVC). The K-1 visa applicant (foreign fiancé) will need to submit the following items to the NVC or U.S. embassy that is requesting them:
- Form DS-160, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application
- Passport valid for at least six months beyond intended period of stay in the U.S.
- Police certificates from your present country of residence and all countries where you have lived for six months or more since age 16
- Medical examination
- Form I-134, Affidavit of Support
- Passport-style photos (2)
- Evidence any previous marriages have been terminated
- Evidence of bona fide relationship with the U.S. citizen petitioner
- Visa fees
Each U.S. embassy may have slightly different K-1 visa requirements and may request additional evidence. The consular officer may ask for additional information, such as photographs and other evidence of a bona fide relationship with the U.S. citizen.
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