How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Judith Ludwic Your Own Question
Judith Ludwic
Judith Ludwic, Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 28671
Experience:  34 years as practicing immigration attorney, with non-immigrant and immigrant visa experience.
12467490
Type Your Immigration Law Question Here...
Judith Ludwic is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Judith. My issue is regarding fiance k1 visa vs k3 spouse

Customer Question

Customer: Hi Judith. My name is***** issue is regarding fiance k1 visa vs k3 spouse visa and which is better?
JA: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: My boyfriend is italian. We just decided to get married. I was going to prep to file the k1 fiance visa so we could marry here when it is approved. But I will be going to italy in a few months. And we may decide to get married there. And the visa process is different for a spouse. And I read with the k3, he would be able to stay with me in the states while awaiting processing of the I-130?
JA: OK got it. Last thing — Immigration Lawyers generally expect a deposit of about $18 to help with your type of question (you only pay if satisfied). Now I'm going to take you to a page to place a secure deposit with JustAnswer. Don't worry, this chat is saved. After that, we will finish helping you.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  Judith Ludwic replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for requesting me.

It is very necessary for you to decide where you are going to marry. Without that decision all I can tell you is procedure and processing times.

K-1

The I-129F will cost $340 plus a $350 fee for the visa processing fee. After he enters the U.S., then you have to marry and then you have to pay $1070 for the I-485

Unfortunately, you will have to be patient because it will take a total of 6-8 months for you and he to go through the arduous process of her immigrating.
You will file form I-129F with the USCIS here in the US at the lockbox (PO Box) as per the instructions.
You must include with the form a G-325A for you and he along with 2 passport style photos of each of you.
You can find those forms and instructions at this link
http://www.uscis.gov/forms

Once your petition is approved (it will take 3-5 months) you will be notified and the petition will be sent to the National Visa Center. In approximately 2-3 weeks they will send you a notice and instructions for her to begin the visa process by submitting the DS-160 & 156K Visa Application.
After that is received the USCIS will request her background/security check be done by the FBI he will then receive his instructions for medical and visa appointment.
He will be told what documentation to bring.
He should document your relationship with pictures, cards, emails, printouts of your skype conversations, etc.

He would probably be refused entry into the US while waiting for the K1 visa interview.

If you marry in Italy again there is delay.

You will file form I-130 with the USCIS here in the US at the lockbox (PO Box) as per the instructions.
You must include with the form a G-325A for you and he along with 2 passport style photos of each of you.

Once you receive the fee receipt for the I-130 you then file the I-129F which will take approximately 3 months to approve
You can find those forms and instructions at this link

http://www.uscis.gov/forms
Once your petition is approved (it will take 3-4 months) you will be notified and the petition will be sent to the National Visa Center. In approximately 2-3 weeks they will send you instructions for applying for the DS-160 online for his K3 visa and medical
After that is received the USCIS will request his background/security check be done by the FBI.
When the clearance on him is received his file is forwarded to the US consulate or Embassy closest to him.
He will then receive his instructions for medical and visa appointment.
He will be told what documentation to bring.

In actuality both process take approximately 5-6 months. So neither is faster than the other. Therefore, your primary consideration needs to be where you want to have the wedding because patience will be required either way and in both cases he will most likely not be able to travel to the US while the procedure is going on as he is considered an intending immigrant.

If you were my client I would say file the K1 NOW! Gov visit in a few months ad have a good time. You will be at your 1/2 way mark at that point to him being able to come here to get married.

You can always go back to Italy and have a renewal ceremony with family and friends there after you get his immigration squared away.

My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up questions. Understand, it is my job to be honest and truthful about the law and sometimes the law does not give you the solution or options you want. Kindly give me a positive rating when you are done. If you feel I earned a BONUS, I am grateful. In the future, you may begin your questions with “FOR JUDITH” and I will be your personal immigration expert.

Judith

Expert:  Judith Ludwic replied 1 year ago.

If you are living abroad and she is not going to live in the US it is premature to begin any process for her.

In addition you are married. A K1 is for a fiance. That is not the route.

Most situations like this play out as follows.

The spouse joins the US citizen in the foreign country where they are working and when they are approximately 6-9 months from moving back to the US they apply for their spouse's permanent resident status.

She cannot simply gain US citizen without the first step of being a lawful permanent resident and that requires her to live here.

The if you choose to go and work abroad again she can file for citizenship if she meets these qualifications:

The spouse must establish that he or she meets the following criteria in order to qualify:​ ​

•A​ge 18 or older​ at the time of filing​.​

•LPR at the time of filing the naturalization application​.​

•Continue to be the spouse of the U.S. citizen up until the time the applicant takes the ​O​ath of​ A​llegiance​.​

•Married to a U.S. c​itizen spouse​ ​regularly stationed abroad in qualifying employment for at least one year​.​

•Has a ​good faith intent ​to reside abroad with the U.S. citizen spouse ​upon naturalization ​and to reside in the United States immediately upon the citizen spouse’s termination of ​employment ​abroad​.​

•Establish that he or she will depart to join the citizen spouse within 30 to 45 days after the date of naturalization​.​[3]

•U​nderstand​ing of basic​ English,​ ​includ​ing​ the ability to read, write, and speak​.​

•Knowledge of basic U.S. history and government​.​

•Demonstrate good moral character for at least three years prior to filing the application ​until the time of naturalization.​ [4]

•A​ttachment to the principles of the U.S. Constitution and​ ​well-disposed​ to the good order and happiness of the U.S. during all relevant periods under the law​.​

The period for showing good moral character (GMC) ​for spouses employed abroad is not specifically ​stated ​in the ​corresponding ​statute ​and ​regulation.​ [5] USCIS ​follows the statutory ​three-year ​GMC ​period ​preceding filing (until naturalization) ​specified for spouses of U.S. citizens​ residing in the United States.​ [6]

In general, the spouse is required to be present in the United States after admission as an LPR for his or her naturalization examination and for taking the Oath of Allegiance for naturalization.​ [7]

I see this is the first time you are using JA and I am eager to make this a positive experience for you. Please ask follow-up questions if my answer is not clear.
Of course, I am sure you understand your positive rating is very important to me as we are not on salary and that is how we receive compensation, you choosing a smiley face or 3+ stars
In the future, you may begin your questions with “FOR JUDITH” and I will be your personal immigration expert.

Judith

Please understand I am working with several customers at a time. I don't like to just give off the cuff answers. I want to give you the proper answer and that takes time.

Related Immigration Law Questions