Long Distance Love: How to Bring Your Fiancé or Spouse to the United States

Love transcends boundaries and limits, something you already know if you’ve fallen in love with someone who lives in another country. As an American citizen, you can bring your fiancé or spouse to the United States by meeting all requirements, providing supplementary evidence, and filling out the necessary paperwork. While the process can be long, it is worth it when you reunite with your loved one.

Options for Engaged Couples

If you are engaged to someone in another country, you can bring them to the United States on a K-1 visa. Also known as the “90-day visa,” this requires the foreign fiancé(e) to marry their American sponsor no later than 90 days after their arrival. If the foreign fiancé(e) has minor children, they may enter the country with a K-2 visa.

To qualify for a fiancé(e) visa, the couple must have met in person within the previous two years. This requirement may be waived if it creates extreme hardship for the U.S. sponsor. The K-1 process requires you to fill out Form I-129F as well as various supporting evidence and documentation, and submit it to the USCIS. If it is approved, the foreign fiancé(e) must fill out Form DS-160, provide evidence of their relationship with the U.S. sponsor, and provide additional documentation. The foreign fiancé(e) must undergo and pass a visa interview.

Bringing a Spouse to the United States

There are two ways to bring a foreign spouse to the United States. To initiate the process in the foreign spouse’s country, they can apply for a K-3 visa by filing Form I-130 (Petition for Alien Relative) and Form I-129F (Petition for Alien Fiancé).  This process is intended to reunite spouses while they await final approval of their visa. The K-3 visa is a nonimmigrant visa, so it is a short-term solution while the visa recipient waits to get permanent resident status. It allows the foreign spouse to remain in the country for two years while they await their immigrant visa.

If you want to begin the process in the United States, this involves filing Form I-130, a Petition for Alien Relative, as well as supporting documentation and supplementary evidence. Your case then goes through the National Visa Center process prior to consular processing. After you and your spouse have filled out the necessary paperwork and paid all required fees, your spouse must go through a visa interview at the relevant U.S. consulate.

The immigration process can be complicated, but having a skilled attorney on your side can help you save time and reunite with your spouse or fiancé more quickly. To discuss your options in greater detail, contact RelisLaw PLLC at 1-800-514-4290.

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We help people from around the world to live and work freely in the U.S., to achieve their dreams, unite families, or escape persecution. No matter what immigration service you need, RelisLaw will provide caring and dependable counsel to you and aggressive advocacy to vigorously fight for you using every available legal avenue. As a global firm, we work with people in countries around the world. We meet clients across the U.S., as well as in New York, Toronto, and Montréal. We also meet with clients globally, located in any country, via Skype and other platforms.

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