The processing time for a fiancé visa (K-1) application is about 8 months to 1 year, depending on the country you’re applying from. The processing time also depends on individual circumstances. At Robert D. Ahlgren and Associates, we have experienced fiance visa immigration lawyers who help clients in the Chicago area have their fiancé visas seamlessly processed and approved.
The first step for those who qualify to get a fiancé visa is for the U.S. citizen fiancé to file a completed and signed Form I-129F with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The main purpose of this form is to provide information to verify the validity of the fiancé relationship.
Upon receiving the fiancé visa application and supporting documents, USCIS will usually send a receipt notice within 30 days. In some cases, USCIS may also send what is referred to as a Request for Evidence (RFE). An RFE is sent when USCIS needs additional information to adjudicate the application. If the reviewing officer is satisfied with the information provided, they will approve the Form I-129F.
The second step in the processing takes place at the National Visa Center (NVC), where the approved Form I-129F is sent by USCIS for further action. The NVC will send the sponsored fiancé an interview notice through the U.S. Embassy or consulate in their home country.
The sponsored fiancé must also complete the State Department’s Form DS-160, which must be done online. This is, in fact, the actual K-1 visa application, which the applicant must complete online but make sure to print the confirmation page once the form has been submitted online.
The third step is the fiancé attends the visa fiancé visa interview as scheduled at the nearest U.S. Embassy or consulate in their home country.
The interviewing officer will ask questions to verify information on both the fiancé petition Form I-129F and Form DS-160. If the examining officer is not satisfied, they may end the interview and ask the applicant to submit additional evidence. If they are satisfied, they will decide on the spot and approve the fiancé visa application.
In some cases, the interviewing officer will tell the applicant to go home and await a decision, which could be approval or denial.
If the fiancé visa is approved, the sponsored fiancé has 90 days to enter the United States and get married within that 90-day period. Once married, the newlywed spouse can apply for a green card, and there is no need to leave the United States while the green card application is processed.
Seeking a visa prior to getting married can be an uphill battle for some people, as the immigration process is always complicated in the United States. If you need additional information and assistance, contact us at Robert D. Ahlgren and Associates to schedule a consultation.
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