Is the K-1 Fiancé Visa a nonimmigrant visa or an immigrant visa?
Many people who want to apply for a U.S. visa are puzzled by the terms and categories used by the U.S. administration.
- On one hand, the Fiancé Visa is listed on the U.S. Embassy websites under non-immigrant types of visa (along with the Tourist, Business Tourist, Crewmember, Transit and Student visas).
- On the other hand the applicants for a K-1 visa are advised to enlist the help of an Immigration attorney because the application process is much more complicated and takes much longer than for the other visas listed above.
The answer is simple (and genius): the K-1 Fiancé Visa is indeed a special type of U.S. visa, a “dual intent” visa: a non-immigrant and an immigrant visa at the same time.
That is because any foreigner holding a K-1 visa is allowed to be temporarily present in the U.S. (thus the non-immigrant aspect) – while also seeking lawful permanent resident status in the U.S. after their marriage (thus simultaneously with immigrant intent).
Why is this classification so important?
The great advantage of this “dual intent” classification is that the K-1 Visa allows its holder (once married on U.S. territory) to easily apply for a Green Card, with high chances of approval.
Switching from lawful non-immigrant to immigrant status for foreign nationals who are physically in the U.S. on a dual intent visa is a relatively short and straightforward process.
Once the marriage takes place on U.S. land, the foreign spouse may immediately apply for legal permanent residency in the U.S. (commonly known as Green Card). The U.S. authorities have already gathered a lot of information on the K-1 visa holder (and their U.S. based spouse) during the K-1 visa application process. So the Green Card application has the potential to be processed quickly and to receive a positive answer.
What if you marry in the U.S. on a B visa instead of a K-1 visa?
Although it is not impossible for the foreign fiancé(e) to enter the U.S. on a B visa and to get married on U.S. territory afterwards, the chances to get a marriage based Green Card after the wedding are not so great. The U.S.C.I.S. (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) may suspect fraud and the Green Card application might take a lot longer and receive a lot more scrutiny.
Are you interested in finding out more about the Fiancé Visa and if it is the right path for you? We strongly suggest you get your information from a professional who specializes in U.S. Immigration Law.
Click here to schedule a call and one of our U.S. immigration experts will map out the process based on your particular case – with no further purchase obligation. However the initial $ 49 consultation fee will be deducted from our final service fee if you accept our offer and continue to employ our help.
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