I came to Japan about 1 year ago. I got married to a friend of 7 years. we have been living together in japan for 10 months married, we decided to go my home in the states.months ago i spoke with a US lawyer about bringing her to the states on a VISITOR visa and converting it to a SPOUSE visa/Green card.the lawyer said it was possible but would not tell me any more details unless i paid his fee of about 2500 dollars to file thru him.all other sources on the internet or over phone to the Embassy in Japan give mixed answers, ambiguous replies, and many redirects to machines that dot give me a call backSo I was wondering if there will be any complications upon bringing my Japanese wife to the US on a visitor visa and converting it to a spouse visa immediately.my family agreed to sponsor the visa seeing i will not have a job upon arrival.We have legal documents from Japanese government and the US embassy.We have Japanese family directory.My wife just updated her passport and Japanese drivers license with my last name on it.will we have any issues upon arrival?any help would be much appreciated.Thank you.
State/Country relating to question: Illinois
Many internet searches, and calls to the US embassy in Japan, and the Japanese embassy.
The correct way to do this is apply for a K1 fiancee or K3 Spouse Visa. The process takes 6 to 9 months or more in which she is supposed to wait outside of the U.S. and neither visa is faster to process than the other. Here is a link:
I know that you may not want to wait, but the only other method is risky. People do it all the time, but it is basically violating the Immigration law. This is because if she uses a tourist visa or Visa Waiver to enter the U.S. when she really has the intention of staying, she is lying to the U.S. government about her intention. If she discloses the truth when she is entering, they will turn her around and send her back. If she lies about her intent, well.....she's lying and can be deported because of it.
With more details, the three ways are essentially below:
1) The K-1 fiancee visa takes 6 to 9 months, but you must have met before during the last two years in order to process it. The I-129F will cost $340 plus a $350 fee for the visa processing fee. After she enters the U.S., then you have to marry and then you have to pay $1070 for the I-485 and she will have to wait about 5 to 7 months and gets another interview that you attend with her so that she can get Residency.
2) The K-3 spouse visa takes 6 to 9 months, you must be married. The I-129F will cost $340 plus $420 for the I-130, and $350 for the visa processing fee. Then after she enters the U.S., you must still file the I-485 for $1070 and wait for the Marriage interview about 5 to 7 months later.
3) The CR-1 visa (or IR-1 if your marriage is more than 2 years old) takes about 1 year or so. You must be married. The fees are $420 for the I-130, $330 for the visa processing fee, $88 for an Affidavit of Support fee. But once she enters the U.S., she enters as a Resident and she does not have to file (or pay for) an I-485 nor does she have to attend an additional interview. She just gets her Green Card in the mail a few weeks later.
So the K-1 and K-3 are faster but generally more expensive. The CR-1 (and IR-1) are slower, but generally cheaper. And no, there is no middle-visa that she can use to enter the U.S. while that process is pending. She will most likely have to wait outside.
Please let me know if you have any additional questions. I would be happy to answer them for you without additional charge, if not, please do not forget to click ACCEPT. That is the only way that I can get paid for helping you. When you click accept, you are not charged again and we can continue to communicate without additional charge if you have a few follow-up questions. If there is a delay in getting back to you it is either because I am answering other questions or I had to log off, but I will be back with you as soon as possible. If you would like to request me in the future, just put my name on the subject line. Positive feedback for my service to you (not the state of the law as it is) is always appreciated as well as any bonus if you think I deserve it. Thank you.
Hey. I really appreciate your time.Most of the information I had come across at different but regardless it was well organized and summed up nicely. Easier to remember and understand. The form and different visa info was so overwhelming before your post. Think you!However I'm still going to ask for some information.So more or less this is the full scenario. She's been a long term friend (7 years) kept in touch online. I came to visit her and we decided to get married out here. My wife wants to experience the states. she has gone to visit before but not for long. Were not 100% on being permanent residence and may return to Japan and start our own business. But now she wants to meet my family and test the waters in the states.So if we decide to stay I was thinking we would just fill out the forms.So if we fill out papers as visitor (visiting her parents in law) and then decide to stay and change visa status and try to become permanent...is that still hazardous to the probability of receiving a green card?Also is there a program or some way that its acceptable for my spouse to have an extended visit as my spouse so we don't have to process for a greencard If were not ready to commit to it?It's a lot of money and if we go back to Japan her green card is revoked (to my understanding)I will most definitely accept the answer if it does not accept after I click reply.This help is much appreciated. Thank you.
Honestly? They just won't believe you. They will just assume you don't want to wait the 6 to 9 months and are trying to get into the U.S. as quickly as possible and apply for the B-2. Most people try this. So they are very familiar with it. It is hazardous to getting the green card, but not if she is denied the B-2. She can try to get the B-2, prove that she has the intention of going back to Japan and a denial would not hurt the green card process. BUT, if she gets the B-2 and tries to enter and the officer at the port of entry is not similarly convinced, they can deny her entry. If they just allow her to withdraw her request to enter, then no harm done, but if they order her excluded, then she has a 5 year bar to being able to come back which can be waived, but it is hard to get that waiver. So it is risky. I am truly sorry. I wish I had an easy solution for you. Please let me know if you have any additional questions and please do not forget to click accept. Thank you.
10+ years of experience in various aspects of U.S. Immigration Law.
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).