To apply for a US visa, one must consider the various factors involved in this process and stay up-to-date with all changes to their paperwork so they can continue throughout every step of immigration proceedings successfully.

At the same time, you are looking to make a great impression and want to check all the boxes when it comes to your visa process.

When they think about their immigrant visa applications, one of the questions people have is about the fiancé visa or the spouse visa. The fiancé and spouse visas sound like they are the same. There are different elements to watch out for with these other terms.

Work with Professionals When Dealing with Citizenship and Immigration Services

Many people wonder if they should marry their significant other and apply for a spouse visa or a fiancé visa and then get married in the United States. It is better to file as a fiancé and get married when your significant other arrives in the United States. However, that may not work for everyone.

This guide will explain these two types of visas and when they are best applied.

At the same time, it is essential to note that working with professionals that understand immigration law will be very useful in this process. The right legal professionals will know about the National Visa Center, the online nonimmigrant visa application, the details about a foreign national spouse, immigration benefits, the visa interview, and much more.

If you are looking for further help after reading this guide, feel free to consult our legal professionals at Elliott Immigration Law today. Our legal professionals have helped with matters relating to permanent residence, consular officer matters, K visa applicants, previous marriages, immigration forms, and much more!

We are pleased to guide you through this process to make it as streamlined and seamless as possible.

The Fiancé Visa

A K1 Fiancé Visa allows a US citizen to bring their foreign fiancé into the United States to get married within 90 days of their fiancé’s entry. This is typically the easiest, fastest, and most affordable route for engaged international couples.

It takes about 5 to 7 months from when the I-129F petition is filed for a Fiancé Visa. The petition must be filed with the United States Customs and Immigration Service.

The petition is then approved and sent to the overseas embassy. It is processed, and the fiance(e) is invited for an interview. If everything goes well, the fiancé will receive a Visa and can enter the United States.

Spouse Visa

There are two types of visas for married international couples:

  • Spouse visa, and
  • Marriage visa

A K-3 Spousal Visa is an expedited version of the much slower marriage visa. It allows the foreign spouse of a US citizen to enter the United States provided they have been married overseas.

Only a US citizen can get this type of Visa for their married spouse – it is not available to a spouse of a US Resident. When the spouse enters the country, they have to file for an Adjustment of Status before becoming a Legal Permanent Resident.

A CR-1 or IR-1 Marriage Visa is available to both a foreign spouse of a US Citizen and a foreign spouse of a US Resident. It generally takes 5 to 7 months from the time of filing the I-130 petition for the marriage visa to be issued.

If a US resident is applying for a marriage visa for their spouse, there is an extra waiting period. Overall, a marriage visa is more complex, expensive, and slower when compared to the K-3 Spousal Visa and the K1 Fiance Visa.

The Argument for the Fiancé Visa

All things being equal, a fiance visa is the better route as it is the fastest, easiest, and least expensive. However, there is a big “but.” The couple has to prove the following:

  • They have been spending time together in the two years preceding the filing of their petition. A couple can confirm these by providing:
  • Trip tickets
  • Photos
  • Travel documentation
  • After they get married, the non-citizen can apply for an adjustment of status after 90 days. The affidavit from both parties will have to be convincing, so you must document what your relationship is like.

If you have any questions or concerns about this information or have questions about other matters, our professional legal team is here for you.

We have fielded questions on various matters ranging from green card holder queries to registering permanent residence and the supporting documents necessary in this process.

If there are details to clarify, reach out to our legal firm to help you with these matters.

The Argument for Spouse Visa

The spouse visa is for couples that have either met and gotten married in the non-citizen’s home country or some third country and gotten married. The couple already has a marriage certificate, and they will go through the I-130 process.

Although this is typically a slower, complex, and expensive route, it is the best for the following kinds of couples:

  • Couples who already had some marriage ceremony. As long as there is some form of a marriage record, you have to go through the spouse visa route. It is wrong to lie to the immigration service and submit fraudulent documentation.
  • Couples who can’t prove they’ve been together: The immigration officer might deny your application for a fiance visa if you can’t provide sufficient evidence to prove you and your spouse have spent time together in the previous two years.
  • Couples with big differences: Couples who have big differences might be denied a fiance visa. These include interracial couples, couples with big age differences, couples that speak different languages, or pairs with very few similarities.

How Do You Know Which Visa Is Best For You?

We wish we could give you a simple answer, but we can’t. If you are a US citizen, you can opt for the faster K-3 Spousal Visa. However, Suppose you are legally married, and there is a record of the marriage somewhere. In that case, you should apply for a marriage visa.

If you and your spouse had some ceremony, you should reach out to us. We will have a brief consultation with you to ascertain the specific details of the ceremony; this will help us give you the best immigration route.

For couples who are not married, we will have to analyze the strength of your case before making a recommendation. If you have a strong chance, we will help you apply for a fiance visa and provide all the support you need. Otherwise, we will advise you to get married and guide you through the process from start to finish.

If you need help with immigrant visa matters, please reach out to our team at Elliot Immigration Law today.

We are committed to helping you bring your significant other into the United States. Our services, experience, and resources are at your disposal. Give us a call today at (404) 890-0372 or fill out the contact form on our website.


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