Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
cassjack2004

Is it easier to get married in Nigeria and apply for I-130 instead of applying for I-29F and getting married in US?

15 posts in this topic

Recommended Posts

Hello everyone,

This is my first post to the site. My boyfriend and I have been dating for over 2 years. He's a Nigerian citizen and I'm an American citizen. Our original plan was to apply for the K-1 Visa, have a civil ceremony in the States, and then (at a later time) have a wedding ceremony back in Nigeria. But I was reading about the I-130, Green Card for Family Member, and it looks like it might be easier to get married first in Nigeria and then apply for the I-130. The major drawback there is that he would have to wait in Nigeria at least 5 months while the Green card is getting approved and we both don't want to do that.

Either way we go, we want to get married on Nov 11, 2011. We need to make a decision on whether to start the Fiance visa or if we should just get married in Nigeria and apply for a green card. Anyone have any advice?

Thanks,

Nichole

post-74606-0-24111700-1307146136_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you start the Fiance Visa (which I actually recommend over the Spouse Visa), then it's almost certain there's no way to be able to marry in the States on 11/11/11. That's way too soon because the Fiance Visa takes usually between 5-9 months (most countries average about the same, more or less)

From what I do know of the Spouse Visa, that one is even MORE complicated, longer (2 years-ish), and MORE money. I don't recommend that route. I'm not sure what I would do if I were you except change the tentative wedding date or move over to Nigeria for awhile.

I filed for the fiance visa in late December and have a tentative wedding date of Sept. 17th, 2011. As it is, we might have to postpone it a little, and our visa is going at a pretty normal rate. My cousin when through the Spouse Visa route so that's how I know a little about its' timing.

We'll see what some others have to say on this but that's my opinion anyway.

Whatever route you take, it'll all come together and the long wait will be worth it! The greater the sacrifice the greater the joy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From what I do know of the Spouse Visa, that one is even MORE complicated, longer (2 years-ish), and MORE money.

Wrong on the timeframe and wrong on the money. The filing fee for a I-130 is slightly more than the I-129F but with a fiancee visa, there is AOS which costs $1070. You also have the K1 visa fee. I estimate you are looking at 2K in fees for a K1 and AOS and 1K in fees for I-130. I rounded up in my estimates.

As far as timeframes go, the posted times by USCIS from NOA1 to NOA2 are the same, 5 months. Spousal visas have processing at the NVC which if managed properly on the petitioner's end, can be done quickly. You can't control things on the NVC end.

Different processes work better for different people. Each couple must go down the path that works best for them. Just because the K1 process works well for one couple doesn't mean it will work well for another and vice versa. Furthermore, which process is more complicated is in the eye of the beholder.

Edited by Ryan H

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suggest you file for the cr/ir1 visa because it takes about the same amount of time as the fiancee visa as well as the fact that it is less costly and he will get his green card right away when he comes to the country and be able to work basically with in a month instead of a couple of months depending how fast you file AOS after the initial fiancee visa.

I am going through the spousal visa and well we are in the NVC stage now and I hope to God I will be done by the end of August with everything.

Edited by Dana-Mića

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Actually the above info from JRTLFlores is a little bit backwards. Spouse visa's CR-1 take about 8 to 12 months now from start to entry to the US. Cost wise they are a little more expensive than the Fiance visa, but once approved you are pretty much done and there are no additional costs. As soon as your spouse arrives in the US they recieve their greencard and can work right away (takes a couple of weeks). Fiance visa requires some additional steps after arrival and in the long run is more expensive, plus it will be months (5 to 6 I think) before your fiance can receive a green card.

Another thing to consider is from the CO's point of view, many of the CO's see the K1 visa as higher risk than the CR-1. Not a blanket rule by any means and it depends on the consulate but I would look in to the approval rates of marriage vs fiance visas from you beneficiaries country and consider that also when deciding. Bottom line is it is better to go with the route most likely to get approval rather than the fastest and least expensive because if you get denied it will cost more in the long run.

Edited by Casprd

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you file I-129F for K1 visa now, he won't be in the US in time for 11/11/11 wedding, but in the first half of 2012.

If you get married 11/11/11 and start CR1 visa process, he will be in the US with you in the end of 2012.

So if you absolutely want to get married Nov 11, then your only option is CR-1.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On a spreadsheet once, I calculated out all anticipated costs involved in both the Fiance and Spouse visa, up to citizenship. The spouse route was significantly more costly.

Also I guessed I'm confused about the timing, because my cousin went for the spouse visa and it took him 2 years from start to finish (finish being getting her green card). Plus he said that since he was in the military, they were actually even able to expedite it to go faster. Maybe things have changed even in the last 3 years??

So if the timing is different than I thought, then missicy's comments should be correct and good succinct advice. What I mentioned is just the kind of information we had to go by to make the same decision. Two years sounded way too long, and we preferred to marry in the bride's country (mine) anyway, so the decision there was a little easier than yours perhaps.

Although, I will say a couple things on wedding dates. We had wanted 09.10.11, which is another popular date. TheKnot.com was warning not to pick popular dates like these simply because sooo many people want them that expenses from vendors become so much higher. Granted, if money is not an issue, go for it. Just a thought to keep in mind though. I was pretty set on 09.10.11 for awhile but finally gave it up when the church I really need to have it in did not have that day available. In the end it's not as much about the date as it is about committing yourselves to each other for all the days of your lives.

Wishing you all the best from the States and Mexico,

Tina and Ramon :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello everyone,

This is my first post to the site. My boyfriend and I have been dating for over 2 years. He's a Nigerian citizen and I'm an American citizen. Our original plan was to apply for the K-1 Visa, have a civil ceremony in the States, and then (at a later time) have a wedding ceremony back in Nigeria. But I was reading about the I-130, Green Card for Family Member, and it looks like it might be easier to get married first in Nigeria and then apply for the I-130. The major drawback there is that he would have to wait in Nigeria at least 5 months while the Green card is getting approved and we both don't want to do that.

Either way we go, we want to get married on Nov 11, 2011. We need to make a decision on whether to start the Fiance visa or if we should just get married in Nigeria and apply for a green card. Anyone have any advice?

Thanks,

Nichole

I think u need to look at ur overall relationship and weigh which one works best. Please keep in mind this is Lagos ur dealing with. Lagos is tough. Either way u go he will have to wait in Lagos to be approved for the visa and although thex give timeframes immigration moves to the beat of there own drum. I chose K1 bcuz i felt that it was a better fit for me and my husband we came through the process without a scratch. FYI there is no easy way when dealing with Naija

post-74606-0-24111700-1307146136_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you everyone for your advice. It has really helped me have a realistic understanding of all that it takes to get either route processed. I talked to my fiancee about this and we still want to go the K1 route mainly because we don't want to have to be separated again for months after we get married. We're still hoping for the November date but that seems less and less likely from looking at everyone's timelines. Thanks again and I'll keep you posted!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you filed today for an I 129 F it would be approved out of USCIS between 4 months (Oct) and 7 months ( Jan). Allow another month to get to the consulate and at least another 2 months for them give you the interview slot and you are looking at early/mid next year. You could be together then but your planned wedding date is gone. If you have to get married 11/11/11 it will be in Nigeria. Once you get married you can file the CR1 and that process is also about a year so he will be here late 2012 to early 2013. The third route is to get residency in Nigeria and then do a direct consular filing . But you need 6 months of residency ( not a visitors visa) before you file. That process could start the clock before you marry and the DCF usually takes about 4 months after you file( after you are married AND have the 6 months residency.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wrong on the timeframe and wrong on the money. The filing fee for a I-130 is slightly more than the I-129F but with a fiancee visa, there is AOS which costs $1070. You also have the K1 visa fee. I estimate you are looking at 2K in fees for a K1 and AOS and 1K in fees for I-130. I rounded up in my estimates.

As far as timeframes go, the posted times by USCIS from NOA1 to NOA2 are the same, 5 months. Spousal visas have processing at the NVC which if managed properly on the petitioner's end, can be done quickly. You can't control things on the NVC end.

Different processes work better for different people. Each couple must go down the path that works best for them. Just because the K1 process works well for one couple doesn't mean it will work well for another and vice versa. Furthermore, which process is more complicated is in the eye of the beholder.

Yes, the best choice for you will depend on your circumstances and priorities. If the wedding date in Nigeria is the top priority, then plan on doing that, followed by a CR1 visa process. Expect the process to take a minimum of 7 months but more likely 9 or 10. That will give you plenty of time also to get very acquainted with the process and learn how to document and build your relationship so that you can have a successful spouse visa process through the Consulate that sees the highest percentage of fraudulent relationships of all US Consulates in the world.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On a spreadsheet once, I calculated out all anticipated costs involved in both the Fiance and Spouse visa, up to citizenship. The spouse route was significantly more costly.

This is incorrect. I am not sure where you were getting your information from, but the K-1 is more expensive.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On a spreadsheet once, I calculated out all anticipated costs involved in both the Fiance and Spouse visa, up to citizenship. The spouse route was significantly more costly.

Your calculations are wrong. In terms of government fees the difference is $848, in favor of the spouse visa. If it's an IR1 instead of a CR1 the difference is $1,438.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, the best choice for you will depend on your circumstances and priorities. If the wedding date in Nigeria is the top priority, then plan on doing that, followed by a CR1 visa process. Expect the process to take a minimum of 7 months but more likely 9 or 10. That will give you plenty of time also to get very acquainted with the process and learn how to document and build your relationship so that you can have a successful spouse visa process through the Consulate that sees the highest percentage of fraudulent relationships of all US Consulates in the world.

I hope the OP reads this & accepts this as exactly correct in every way. Especially the reference to what occures at that counsulate. There have been many cases that were very troubled from there here on V J.

Additonaly there is a lot of bad info given here about timing & cost that needs to be disregarded.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Back to Top ↑

Didn't find the answer you were looking for? Try asking our VJ Immigration Lawyers.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  


Important Disclaimer: Please read carefully the Visajourney.com Terms of Service. If you do not agree to the Terms of Service you should not access or view any page (including this page) on VisaJourney.com. Answers and comments provided on Visajourney.com Forums are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Visajourney.com does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. VisaJourney.com does not condone immigration fraud in any way, shape or manner. VisaJourney.com recommends that if any member or user knows directly of someone involved in fraudulent or illegal activity, that they report such activity directly to the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement. You can contact ICE via email at Immigration.Reply@dhs.gov or you can telephone ICE at 1-866-347-2423. All reported threads/posts containing reference to immigration fraud or illegal activities will be removed from this board. If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by contacting us here with a url link to that content. Thank you.
×