Allegheny Immigration Group are immigration lawyers and fiancée visa lawyers. We represent people who wish to bring their foreign fiancée to the U.S. to marry. Allegheny Immigration group are competent, caring, professional and non-judgmental.
Americans travel all over the world and meet all manner of people when they do. Sometimes these meetings turn into relationships. In many cases the American Citizen will stay in touch with the foreign friend, perhaps even visit them multiple times. When a relationship with a foreigner develops into an engagement to marry, the American may wish to have their foreign fiancée come to the United States to marry. In this case, the American will apply to have a fiancée visa issued for the foreign fiancée.
The American Citizen will first petition the government to issue a fiancée visa, called a “K-1 Visa”, for their foreign fiancée. The embassy or consulate in the foreign country will contact the foreign fiancée and issue a K-1 Visa for the foreign fiancée to enter the United States for the purpose of marrying the U.S. Citizen. The marriage must occur within 90 days of entering the United States and must be a marriage to the U.S. Citizen who filed the petition that caused the visa to be issued.
After the marriage is formalized before a judge, religious official, or other authorized person, the newly married couple will have to follow the procedure to get the foreign spouse a green card. (See our page on immigration through marriage)
Entered on K-1 Visa/Fiancee Visa but not Married Within 90 Days
Under existing law, the foreign fiancée is supposed to marry the U.S. Citizen or return home within 90 days of entering the U.S.. Simply put, the foreign fiancée is authorized to be in the U.S. For 90 days, after that the foreign fiancée is present in the United Sates without authorization, and may begin to accrue unlawful presence time, which can have significant consequences.
Thankfully, at least for the present, a marriage that occurs on day 95 will still give the foreign fiancée, now spouse the ability to adjust status and get a green card. Minor delays will not defeat the immigration application of the foreign spouse, however, significant delays can prevent adjustment of status and require the foreign spouse to return home for up to ten years before being allowed to re-enter the United States
Certain facts about the foreign fiancée may exist and may render the foreign fiancée “inadmissible” under immigration law. If your fiancée is determined to be legally inadmissible by U.S. immigration, the petition for a fiancée visa may be denied or delayed.
Sometimes a foreign fiancée will have a medical condition that renders him or her inadmissible as long as the condition continues. A classic example of this is where the foreign fiancée goes for a medical examination and is discovered to be infected with tuberculosis. In cases such as this, your fiancée will have to undergo medical treatment in his or her home country until the condition resolves. The good news is that the 90 days doesn’t start to run until your fiancée is issued a visa and enters the United States so the time spent treating and recovering from a condition that rendered the foreign fiancée inadmissible won’t count against the 90 days
You fiancée may have a criminal history, or have been confused with someone that has a criminal history. If a significant criminal history is accurately or inaccurately attributed to your foreign fiancée, it will render them inadmissible to the United States. You immigration lawyer should be able to help you clear up these issues if at all possible.
Other Grounds for Inadmissibility
Medical and criminal are not the only types of reasons that your foreign fiancée may be determined to be inadmissible. Your fiancée may have already been deported form the U.S., he or she may be under a statutory bar to admission, and many other things.
You will be required to prove that your engagement, and you intention to marry are bona fide. Marriage based immigration fraud is a big problem, so the government won’t simply “take your word for it that you are engaged and intend to marry. You will be required to demonstrate the bona fides of your engagement and intention to marry as part of the process of applying for the issuance of a fiancée visa.
Bona fides are pieces of evidence that you submit with your application for fiancée visa that tend to prove the truthful nature of your claim to be engaged and intending to marry. A receipt for an engagement ring is commonly used, but not all cultures have that custom. Sometimes, copies of chat logs or telephone records are submitted. Photos together on vacation or meeting with the foreign fiancee’s parents can be useful.
Unfortunately, there is no specific list of pieces of evidence that will prove that any individual fiancée visa application is, in fact, truthful. Cultural and circumstantial evidence will vary based on each individual couple’s situation(s).
Where an application for a fiancée visa is incomplete, or where the applicant has not submitted a quantity or quality of supporting evidence to prove out the bona fide nature of the application, the applicant will receive a request for additional evidence, of RFE as they are sometimes called by lawyers. While it is much more common for unrepresented people to receive a RFE, given the lack of a specific list of evidence, even represente4d parties will sometimes receive a RFE.
The important thing about the RFE is that you have to respond within the allotted time for a response. Even a poor quality timely response is better than not responding at all, as if you fail to respond to an RFE the government will treat that as you having abandoned or given up your application and you will have to start the process all over again from the beginning, and pay the filing fee again.
Being engaged and getting married are important milestones in one’s life. Go with experience. Allegheny Immigration Group are here to help you in applying for and receiving a visa for your foreign fiancée and, ultimately, a green card for your husband or wife.