K-1 petition allows a U.S. citizen (but not a lawful permanent resident) to petition for a fiancé to enter the U.S. in order to marry the U.S. citizen petitioner.
This is a non-immigrant visa that allows the fiancé to enter the United States for a limited time and purpose: to marry the U.S. citizen within 90 days of arrival.
To qualify for this visa, the couple must show that they have met at least once in person within the past two years, that they intend to marry, and that they are legally able to marry.
Under certain circumstances, the CIS will waive the requirement that the couple actually have met in person within the past two years. For example, if it is an arranged marriage, customary within that culture, then the CIS may waive the requirement that the couple have met within the past two years. Generally circumstances that are not within the power of the petitioner to control and are likely to last for a considerable duration are considered persuasive.
If the couple does not get married within 90 days, the fiancé may be required to leave the United States. If the couple gets married within 90 days, the same petitioner should submit a new petition to adjust the fiancé’s status.
The K-1 fiancé’s unmarried children under the age of 21 can be included in the petition and enter the U.S. with the fiancé parent.
Children of K-1 fiancé are designated as K-2 visa holders. Generally, K-2 visa holders can adjust status and become permanent residents as long as they still qualify for the K-2 visa (meaning that they must be unmarried and under 21 at the time the adjustment application is filed), but law is developing and some immigration judges have been known to grant LPR status to K-2 derivatives over 21 years of age.
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