K1/K2/K3/K4 Fiancée/Spouse Visas

A United States citizen may petition to bring his fiancée (K-1) and that person’s children to the United States for marriage. A United States citizen may bring his spouse and that person’s children (K-3 and K-4 visas, respectively) to the United States to complete processing for permanent resident status.

K-1 Fiancée  

The K-1 visa is for the fiancée of a U.S. citizen. To submit a petition for the fiancé(e) visa a U.S. citizen (the petitioner) must intend to marry his fiancé(e) within 90 days of his or her entry to the US. The petition must include the evidence that within 2 years of filing the petition the U.S. citizen met his fiancée in person. There are two exceptions to the meet in person requirement, first, if the requirement to meet would violate strict and long-established customs of your or your fiancé(e)’s foreign culture or social practice and second, if the petitioner proves that the requirement to meet would result in extreme hardship to him.

Fiancé(e) status automatically expires after 90 days. It cannot be extended. Your fiancé(e) should leave the United States at the end of the 90 days if you do not marry. If your fiancé(e) does not depart, he will be in violation of U.S. immigration law. This may result in removal (deportation) and/or could affect future eligibility for U.S. immigration benefits.

K-2 Fiancée Children. You can bring your fiancée’s child (under 21 and unmarried) to the U.S. The child’s name must be included in the submitted petition.

K-3 Spouse of US Citizen

The K-3 nonimmigrant visa is for the foreign-citizen spouse of a United States citizen. This visa category is intended to shorten the physical separation between the foreign-citizen and U.S. citizen spouses by having the option to obtain a nonimmigrant K-3 visa overseas and enter the United States to await approval of the immigrant visa petition.  K-3 visa recipients subsequently apply to adjust status to a permanent resident (LPR) with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) upon approval of the petition. Because the spouse of a U.S. citizen applying for a nonimmigrant K-3 visa must have an immigrant visa petition filed on his behalf by his U.S. citizen spouse and pending approval, a K-3 applicant must meet some of the requirements of an immigrant visa. A foreign citizen who marries a U.S. citizen outside the U.S. must apply for the K-3 visa in the country where the marriage took place.

A K-3 visa holder’s authorized stay automatically expires 30 days after any of the following events:

  • USCIS denies or revokes the Form I-130 visa petition 
  • USCIS denies a Form I-485 filed by the K-3 nonimmigrant or Department of State denies the immigrant visa application filed by the K-3 nonimmigrant 
  • Termination of the marriage through divorce or annulment

Travel. Applicants presently in the United States in a K-3 or K-4 nonimmigrant classification may travel outside the United States and return using their K-3 or K-4 nonimmigrant visa.

Changing to Another Nonimmigrant Visa Category. K-3 or K-4 nonimmigrant visa holders cannot change status in the United States to another nonimmigrant visa category.

K-4 Children of US Citizen. A child of a K-3 nonimmigrant visa applicant may be eligible for a K-4 visa if he is unmarried and is under 21. Holders of K-4 nonimmigrant visas will be admitted to the United States for 2 years or until the day before their 21st birthday, whichever is shorter. The K-4 nonimmigrant ‘s status will expire when he turns 21.

A K-4’s authorized stay automatically expires when the K3’s status expires. The K-4 nonimmigrant’s status automatically expires 30 days after child marries.