Using the Fiancee Visa Process to
Secure a Green Card by Marriage

The fiancee visa process is a way to get your fiancee into the United States, where you can then marry and file to adjust the visa if you two so choose. An overview of the fiancee visa process, including what to do once your spouse arrives in the states, is provided here.

Filing for a K1 Visa

The process of filing for a K1 fiancee visa begins with the filing of a petition by the US citizen spouse (note, this process is not available to permanent residents on a green card, only to US citizens). To petition for a fiancee visa, file form I-129.

Following the filing, you and your fiancee will need to wait for approval by the USCIS. The petition is then sent to the consulate in the country where your fiancee resides. Your fiancee must then go to the consulate to apply for the K1 visa. There are a number of documents that will be required. These will be outlined in the packet, or you can learn more about the required documents for a K1 visa application online.

Once your intended has obtained a K1 visa, he or she can come to the United States, subject to the provisions of the visa. He or she must enter the states at a Port of Entry.

Now that Your Spouse has Arrived

Once in the states, it is very advisable for your spouse to file for a social security number, which will allow him or her to work in the US, bank and do business, and file income tax statements.

In order to stay in the US, your spouse will need to change the status of his/her visa. Your fiancee will need to file for an Adjustment of Status (form I-485), which will result in the granting of a green card by marriage if approved. Along with it, you, as sponsor, will need to file form I-864, the Affidavit of Support.

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You and your spouse need to understand that green cards for all new marriages that are less than two years old are granted on a conditional basis (in order to prove the validity of the marriage). After two years have passed, you will again need to file to remove the restrictions on your spouse's green card; form I-751 is used to petition to remove conditions.

This is a basic overview of the fiancee visa process and subsequent filings to secure permanent, unconditional green card status. Once complete, your spouse is free to live and work in the United States, and also to apply to become a United States citizen.

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