The K-1 visa petition can be filed by U.S. citizens who wish to marry their foreign national fiancé (male) or fiancée (female) in the U.S. To apply for the U.S. Fiancée Visa both the partners should either be unmarried or their previous marriages should have been legally settled through a divorce, annulment, or death of their prior partner.
The main eligibility criteria for getting a K-1 visa are that:
- your intended spouse is a U.S. citizen (not a permanent resident or green card holder)
- both members of the couple are legally able to marry (single and of legal age)
- you must have a genuine intention of marrying the U.S. citizen petitioner after arriving in the U.S., and
- the two of you must have met and seen each other in person within the past two years.
This visa is not for use by couples who are simply considering marriage. You’ll have to show that you have made actual wedding plans for your 90-day stay. It doesn’t have to be a fancy wedding, but you’ll need to have made some basic plans, for example a place, a date, a type of ceremony or proceedings (even if it’s only in front of a judge), and the like.
Although, if there is any long followed custom or tradition that would violated and pose a hardship in your meeting, this requirement can be exempted. It is also mandatory that the marriage should take place within 90 days of your fiancé / fiancée entering the United States. The US Fiancée Visa also has provisions to accommodate your fiancé/ fiancée children in the United States who are below 21 years and are unmarried.
The U.S. marriage visa can be obtained at the U.S. Embassy or consulate abroad, once the petition is approved. Until the arrival in the United States, the fiancé / fiancée are required to remain unmarried.
In occasions when any of these rules are violated, the fiancé / fiancée will be notified to leave the United States. They will be treated as a nonimmigrant until the marriage takes place. An extension to the 90 day original nonimmigrant U.S. marriage visa is also not entertained.