If you are a US citizen engaged to a foreign national and would like to get married in the United States, then you may be able to sponsor your fiancé(e) for a K-1 visa. The K-1 is somewhat of a hybrid visa, as it is often grouped with nonimmigrant visas but provides a direct path to immigration — as long as the marriage takes place.
The requirements for the K-1 visa are the following:
- You and your fiancé(e) intend to get married no more than 90 days after your fiancé(e) enters the United States on the K-1 visa.
- You and your fiancé(e) are both free to marry, meaning all previous marriages have been legally terminated by death, divorce, or annulment.
- You and your fiancé(e) have seen each other in person within the two years before the application is filed (with a few narrow exceptions).
The K-1 visa application process involves two steps: First, you must petition for your fiancé(e) here in the United States. Then, after this petition is approved, your fiancé(e) may apply for the actual K-1 visa at his or her nearest US consulate.
Once the marriage takes place, the foreign national may file a family-based Green Card application. If the marriage does not go through as planned, however, then the K-1 visa becomes invalid and your fiancé(e) must leave the United States.
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