What is a K3 Spouse Visa?
K3 Spouse Visa allows foreign spouses of US citizens to enter the US to wait for their Green Card. If their application is successful, they receive a temporary legal status allowing them to live close to their partners while waiting for USCIS’s decision.
In the past, US citizens and their foreign spouses would be separated for many months. Now, thanks to K3 Spouse Visa, foreign partners of US citizens can come to the US before receiving their immigrant visa and the right to settle in the country permanently. Many people, however, do not need to apply for the K3 Visa as the processing time of an immigrant visa application can be similar to the processing time of the K3 Visa.
Moreover, as an alternative to K3 Spouse Visa, many people decide to apply for IR1/CR1 Visa. This immigrant visa allows you to come to the US to live and work there on a permanent basis.
Who is eligible for a K3 Spouse Visa?
If you are a foreign national married to a US citizen, you might be eligible for a K3 Spouse Visa if you meet the following requirements:
● You and your US partner are officially married
● You meet the requirements outlined by the International Marriage Broker Regulation Act of 2005
● Your US spouse is able to support you financially after you join them in the US
● Your US spouse filed a Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative for you
● You intend to enter the US to await the approval of Form I-130.
Both heterosexual and homosexual couples can apply for the K3 Spouse Visa. In addition to these requirements, you also need to meet the general entry requirements. These include not having a criminal record and not having previously violated the conditions of your US visa.
How long is the K3 Spouse Visa valid for?
If you are granted the K3 Spouse Visa, you will be allowed to enter the US and stay there for two years. During this period you will be able to leave and re-enter the US as many times as you want. Nevertheless, during these two years, you will not be eligible for any other non-immigrant visa.
It is possible to receive a K3 Spouse Visa extension. If you want to apply for one, you have to submit Form I-538 to USCIS. If your extension application is successful, you will get the chance to stay in the US for an additional two years. Nevertheless, if you get divorced during this time, your K3 Visa will be revoked.
What is the processing time of the K3 Spouse Visa?
Obtaining a K3 Spouse Visa can be a lengthy process. After you submit Form I-129F you have to be prepared to wait around 30 days for the USCIS to issue the receipt notice for it. The receipt indicated that your petition has been received and the processing of your visa application has commenced. When all the other steps are taken into consideration, on average, the processing of the K3 Spouse Visa takes between 6 to 9 months.
As for the interview, it usually takes 4 to 6 weeks to receive the date for the interview.
How to apply for the K3 Visa?
If you want to apply for the K3 Visa, you have to complete the following steps:
- Your spouse who is a US citizen has to file Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative on your behalf. To do so they will need to submit proof of their US citizenship and a marriage certificate or another document proving that your marriage is authentic. As a foreign citizen, you will also need to include a birth certificate and a copy of a valid passport.
- Then, after receiving a receipt notice for the first form, your US spouse also has to file Form I-129F Petition for Alien Fiancé(e). Again they will need to provide evidence of their US citizenship and a legal marriage certificate. If you as the foreign spouse have previously been to the US, you will also need to include Form I-94. Additionally, passport size photographs of both you and your US spouse will be required.
- After receiving the approval of Form I-129F, you have to electronically submit Form DS-160. To do so, you have to create a user account on the website of the US Department of State. Once you have submitted it, make sure to retain a barcode shown on the confirmation page.
- After successfully submitting all the Forms you have to pay the visa processing fee. You can do it online or during the interview at a US Embassy or Consulate.
- Then you have to schedule an interview at a US Embassy or Consulate in your home country, prepare for it and attend it. While waiting for your interview appointment you will also have to undergo a medical examination and get all the required vaccinations. These differ depending on where you are coming from so make sure to check country-specific information.
How to prepare for the K3 Spouse Visa interview?
When preparing for your K3 Spouse Visa interview, make sure to gather the following documentation:
- An original birth certificate
- The confirmation page showing that you have submitted the DS-160 Form
- Your valid foreign passport
- The confirmation proving that you have attended the medical examination
- Two coloured passport size photographs
- Evidence showing that any prior marriages have been officially terminated (if applicable).
It is not necessary for your spouse to accompany you during the interview. The goal of the appointment is to ensure that the visa is being granted to you for legitimate reasons and that your marriage is authentic. There is no one specific list of K3 Spouse Visa interview questions but you are likely to be asked questions about your background and your relationship with the US citizen. You might also have to answer questions about how you see the future in the US with your partner.
After the interview, you can expect to receive the decision on the same day or sometimes within a few days. Once you receive the formal approval of your K3 Spouse Visa, you can start preparing for your journey to the US.
If an official has a reason to believe that you entered the marriage with the goal of receiving a US Green Card, or if they suspect that your marriage has been forced, your K3 Visa application will be rejected. Similarly, if you lie during the interview, you risk not receiving the visa.
Can I bring children to the US on the K3 Spouse Visa?
If you want your children to come to the US with you, they can apply for a K4 Visa. This non-immigrant visa is intended for dependent children of K3 Spouse Visa holders. To qualify for the K4 Visa, your children need to meet the following conditions:
- They are 21 years of age or younger
- They are unmarried and are not living an independent life
- They want to move to the US with you.
If their application is successful, your children will be able to stay in the US for two years or until their 21st birthday, whichever is shorter. If you extend your K3 Spouse Visa, your children might also be able to extend their K4 Visa.
Only children of married couples can apply for the K4 Visa. If you and your partner are engaged but not year officially married, your children will have to apply for a K2 Visa instead.
What is the cost of the K3 Spouse Visa?
When applying for the K3 Spouse Visa you will need to pay the following fees:
- The filling of Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative – $535
- The filling of Form I-129, Petition for Alien Fiancé(e) – $460
- The fees associated with attending a medical examination
- Biometrics services fee
- Other services, for example, translation and fees associated with issuing all the documents needed for the application.
Overall, the total cost of a K3 Spouse Visa is around $994 but it varies depending on what additional services you need to use.
Sadly, if your visa application is refused, the fees you have paid for it to be processed will not be refunded. To avoid losing money, seek advice from an immigration lawyer. They will help you make sure that your application is complete and that you have filled all the forms correctly.
How can IAS’ lawyers help?
Our immigration lawyers are experts when it comes to US visas. They will explain each step of the K3 Visa application process to you and will help you prepare a portfolio of evidence featuring all the required documents. Thanks to the help of our immigration lawyers you can increase the chances of your visa application being accepted.
At IAS, we care about our clients not having to be separated from their families for too long. Our lawyers are committed to helping you apply for the K3 Visa so that you can join your partner in the US as soon as possible. We also offer professional legal advice for those who want to bring their children to the US with them.
The US immigration system is complex and the process of applying for a US visa can be stressful. Luckily our lawyers are dedicated to guiding you through it, providing you with all the help and assistance you might require.
For more information about how our immigration lawyers can help with your K3 Spouse Visa application, call +1 844 290 6312 today.
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After you receive the K3 Spouse Visa, you will not be automatically allowed to work in the US. Nevertheless, you will be able to apply for employment authorisation upon your arrival to the US. You can do it by filing Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization. You can submit the application immediately after you join your spouse in the country, but receiving the approval allowing you to work can take around four months.
K3 Spouse Visa allows foreign citizens to join their spouses in the US while waiting for USCIS’s decision regarding their immigrant visa to the US. The main reason why many people believe it is not worth applying for it is the lengthy processing time.
On average, the processing of the K3 Spouse Visa takes between six and nine months. The waiting time depends on the workload of a US Consulate or Embassy where you are applying but it is comparable to the processing time of the marriage green card application. That is why many people decide against applying for the K3 Spouse Visa and choose an alternative route to join their spouses in the US.
If your application for the K3 Spouse Visa is successful, you will be able to stay in the US for two years. During this time you will be able to travel and leave the country as many times as you want, without having to worry about losing your status.
The K3 Spouse Visa is for foreign spouses of US citizens. It was introduced to give couples the chance to shorten the separation the partners go through while waiting for the approval of an immigrant visa for the foreign citizen. To be eligible for the K3 Spouse Visa, you need to meet the following requirements:
● You are married to a US citizen
● Your US spouse can support you financially after your arrival in the US
● Your US spouse filed a Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative on your behalf
● You can provide evidence showing that your marriage is legitimate and authentic
● You intend to remain married and live together after you join your spouse in the US.
It is possible for K3 Visa holders to bring their children to the US with them. Your unmarried children under the age of 21 can come to the US with you on a K4 Visa status. Both your biological and adopted children can apply for the K4 Visa. If their application is successful, they will be able to stay in the US for two years with the possibility of extending their visa.