Articles Posted in Visa Services

A CR1 Marriage Visa is used for spouses and relatives of a US Citizen or Legal permanent Resident. To obtain a CR1 Marriage Visa, the US Citizen must file form I-130 Petition for Alien Relative. The current edition is dated 12/19/2012. Some previous editions are still accepted. File your forms and documents with USCIS at the address that corresponds to the state of the petitioners home residence. You will find this information on the form instructions or by visiting The current filing fee is $420.00. Your check must be made payable to The US Department of Homeland Security.

If you have questions about the CR1 Marriage Visa, you are welcome to call me anytime toll free at 1-888-515-3529.

Attorney Jeff Pettys

First, congratulations! You have successfully completed the first part of the Fiance Visa application process.
Now that your I-129f Petition for Alien Fiance has been approved by USCIS, you must now prepare and submit the next set of required forms and documents with the US Embassy located nearest to where your foreign fiancé resides.
Your fiancé will be contacted by the US Embassy about 3-4 weeks after your I-129f was approved by USCIS.  The US Embassy will either send a letter or email describing their procedures and requirements for working with them to obtain your Fiancé Visa. Every Embassy has its own procedures, but you can expect to have to submit an online DS 160 form and an I-134 Affidavit of Support form filled out by the Petitioner. The Embassy notification will also provide you with details for other items that you must obtain before your interview and how to make any fee payments. Read the Embassy notification carefully and do exactly as instructed.

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When a petitioner has filed more than one K1 Fiance Visa petition before, he or she may have to seek a waiver for multiple filings.
If you have previously filed a K1 Fiance Visa petition for two or more beneficiaries or you have had a K1 Fiance Visa petition approved within the last 2 years, you must file for a waiver.
To request a waiver, you must write a letter requesting the waiver and explain the facts of your previous petitions. Be sure to include full names, dates, and the case numbers for each filing. So long as Immigration does not conclude that you are abusing the system or not truly in love, you should get the waiver and be allowed to proceed with your new K1 Fiance Visa application.

A K1 Fiance Visa requires the foreign fiance to get married to the US Citizen within 90 days of entering the United States. There are no exceptions.

When your fiance enters the United States, US Customs will stamp his or her I-94 card or passport with an expiration date that is set at 90 days from the date the fiance entered the United States. You have until that date to get married. If you do not get married as planned within those 90 days, the foreign fiance must leave the United States before the 90 days expires. If the foreign fiance overstays past 90 days, there will be some form of consequences. Some fiancés who don’t get married within the 90 days and stay in the United States are hoping to meet somebody else or find another way to adjust their status at a later date. This will not work and can very easily lead to harsh sanctions. Currently, there is now way to adjust the status of a K1 Fiance Visa holder who did not comply with the marriage requirements of their fiance visa. The foreign fiance who overstays will always be considered illegal while in the United States.

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The immigration rules require the couple applying for a K1 Fiance Visa to have met in person within a 2 year period of time preceding the filing on their K1 Fiance Visa application. This typically requires the US Citizen to travel overseas to meet his or her fiance. The first trip will always be the most memorable and perhaps the most exciting, but in your excitement, don’t forget about your safety. 


I have a few tips that you should follow to insure your safety. 


Always stay in a good hotel. When I travel overseas, I look for the better well know hotels. These are usually four or five star hotels and they cost more. For starters, the hotel staff at the better hotels are trained to watch over their guest. They are familiar with the local dangers that a guest from the US would not be familiar with. Look for a hotel with a door man, bellman and lobby staff. They will greet you and take notice of you when you enter and leave the hotel. They can also arrange for a driver instead of a public taxi. The better hotels have security cameras and they monitor the hallways and will record who and when someone enters and leaves t your room. This type of security helps protect you from criminal acts. The difference between a good hotel that is safe and a bad hotel that isn’t may only be about 50 US dollars. This is a small price to pay for your safety.


Be very careful of public taxis. In some countries, it is very unwise to take public taxis. If you can arrange for a car and driver through your hotel, that’s best.  In some countries, there is a pattern and history involving public taxis and kidnappings. Do your homework and try to understanding what are the safest ways to get around in your new country. Public transportation can be a better alternative, but again, it depends. Continue reading →

Obtaining a CR1 Marriage Visa starts with the submission of the I-130 Petition for Alien Relative form and all the required documents with USCIS. After receiving approval of your I-130 form, you will next be contacted by the National Visa Center who will send you a letter or email instructing you to pay your fees and to submit your Immigrant Visa Application Form and your I-864 Affidavit of Support, along with more documents. The National Via Center has updated their form and is now using an online form called the DS-260. This replaces the older DS 230 form.

To start working on the new online DS-260 Immigrant Visa Application form, you will need to go to: and then click on the link for the DS 260 form. Before you can login to complete your form, you will need your NVC case number your NVC ID number. You can find this on your NVC email or letter. As you proceed through the form, you will be asked a number of questions and then when each page is complete, you can proceed to the next page. You cannot proceed to the next page until every question is fully answered. If you need to exit the form to get the answer(s) to a question you cannot answer on the spot, I suggest you save the form and then return later with your answer(s) to continue.

You will need a copy of your USCIS I-797 Approval Notice and a copy of the beneficiaries passport bio page to complete the form.

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What questions will I be asked at my K1 Fiance Visa Interview?

I get this question a lot. Understandably, my clients are always nervous for their interview and the first thing I tell them is that they have nothing to worry about. When your relationship is genuine and honest, all you really have to remember is to tell the truth. You are seeking a fiance visa because you are in love and want to get married. You can expect that most if not all of your questions will be about your fiance, how you met, what made you fall in love and what are your plans together. Most interviews take less than 20 minutes.

Some typical questions that you might get asked at your fiance visa interview are:

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Today, there are more options than ever to find someone to help you apply for a Fiance Visa or Marriage Visa. There are discount visa processing companies located in virtually every country in the world, numerous attorneys and law firms, friends who have gone through the immigration process and claim to know something about it, and yourself.

Processing your visa paperwork is a very important step to insure that you and your loved one can stay together and become the family that you want to be. No matter who you hire, great care must be given to your application to make sure it is done correctly and timely. And regardless of who you hire, it’s an expensive undertaking. For sure, there are differences in the fees charged by the various service providers for their work, but when you add in the filing fees, its expensive no matter who you chose. I guess what I am trying to say is that this is no time to be “penny wise and pound foolish”. You will always get what you pay for. The lowest that I have found for the discount Fiance or Marriage Visa processing companies is around $500. That’s really cheap. The most expensive I have found for a law firm is around $2700. I think something like $1000-1300 for the legal work is fair.

The question you should be asking yourself is not who is the cheapest service provider, but who provides you with the best value for your money. To determine this, you have to understand what it is you should be looking for and what level of service and care do you really need. 

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Adjusting status to become a Legal Permanent Resident while in the United States on a Visa Waiver requires careful thought and analysis.

USCIS and the US State Department is particularly sensitive to matching a persons true intent when entering the United States with the appropriate type of visa or special entry permission, like a Visa Waiver. It is an absolute “no no” to use a Visa Waiver to enter the United States for the purpose of getting married and applying to become a Legal Permanent Resident (immigrant). To do so would likely constitute fraud. The visitors intent at the time of entry is the issue.

If a person enters the United States as a visitor under the Visa Waiver program and truly intends to visit with no agenda to get married and then after entering the United States, thereafter decides to get married and wishes to stay, applying for Legal Permanent Residency is a permissible option.

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The K1 Fiance Visa requires the US Citizen and the foreign fiance seeking to obtain a fiance visa, to have met in person within a two year period immediately preceding the filing of the I-129 Fiance Visa application form. The best evidence of a personal meeting is a time stamped picture of the couple together, preferably in front of a well know landmark in the country your claiming to have met in. I recommend that the picture be taken by a camera that automatically time stamps the picture. In the absence of a time stamped picture, you must write the date of your meeting on the back of the picture.

Other good evidence of a personal meeting would be airline ticket stubs, boarding passes and receipts which include the passengers name, and flight information. A copy of your passport entry stamp would also be good evidence as well.  When you enter another country, you will receive an entry stamp bearing the country name and date of entry. Make a copy of this to provide USCIS with your other proof. If you are in the Military, and living in the country where your fiance resides, or where at the time of your personal meeting, a copy of your Military orders or a letter from your commanding offer stating that you were present in a particular location and time of meeting would be good evidence in that case.

Other evidence like, movie, hotel, and restaurant receipts can be helpful as further support, but by themselves will not be sufficient to prove that you met in person.

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