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Fiancé Visas

Fiancé Visas

Many couples experience the pain of separation when one is a foreign national. There are many options for getting your future spouse a lawful immigration status in the United States, and the Monterey county immigration attorneys at Miranda, Magden & Miranda, LLP, can help you find the best one for your particular circumstances. 

How does a fiancé obtain a visa?

There are many types of visas that can allow a person to enter the United States lawfully. The K-1 visa (also called a “fiancé visa”) allows the engaged partner of a U.S. citizen to enter the United States. The couple must then get married within ninety days. After the marriage, the newly married spouse can apply for permanent residence (a “green card”) based on having entered on a K-1 visa and marrying the U.S. citizen Petitioner within 90 days of entry.

The process of obtaining a K-1 visa begins by filing a Petition for Alien Fiancé(e), on a form known as I-129F. This petition must be accompanied by documentation that proves: 

  • One spouse is an American citizen
  • The couple intends to marry within ninety days from the time the foreign national fiancé is admitted into the country
  • Evidence that the couple is to lawfully marry (for example, a divorce decree or death certificate of a previous spouse)
  • Evidence that the couple has met in person in the prior 2 years, or qualifies for an exception to this requirement.

If this petition is denied, an immigration attorney can help you explore your options for challenging the denial. If the petition is approved, it will be forwarded to the U.S. embassy or consulate where your fiancé will obtain his or her visa (which is usually in the fiancé’s home country). An interview will be scheduled with a consular officer. If the officer determines the fiancé is eligible for a K-1 visa, it will be granted. If not, the I-129F petition will be returned to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. 

Other immigration options

Not all fiancé(e)s will qualify for a K-1 visa. If the parties intend to marry outside the United States or longer than ninety days after entry into the country, a K-1 visa cannot be granted. A visa also cannot be granted unless the couple has met at least once in person in the two years prior to filing their petition (or proves eligible for an exception to this rule). If you cannot qualify for a fiancé visa, it may still be possible to gain lawful immigration status another way.  

For example, after a couple gets lawfully married (meaning the marriage is lawful under the laws where the marriage occurred), the foreign national can apply for a green card as the spouse of a U.S. citizen. It is important to consult with an immigration lawyer about all options for bringing your fiancé or spouse to the United States to establish a life together. There are many different ways to obtain lawful immigration status.

The right immigration attorneys for California fiancé visa cases

Lawful immigration status is one of the most important legal privileges a person has. If this privilege is not protected, you could be separated from your family and loved ones for years to come. Help create and preserve family unity in the United States for your family by consulting with a California immigration attorney as soon as possible. The law firm of Miranda, Magden & Miranda, LLP has years of experience in handling California immigration cases. Contact us to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced Monterey county immigration lawyers.

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