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I really need some advice from you guys. I am so confused about which visa should i do. My fiancee lives in Jamaica and I am going to visit him in January and , I am not  sure should I marry him there and then apply for CR-1 when I return  or should I apply for K-1?  Which process is better process? Thanks in advance!

Edited by Whitney Bartley

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25 minutes ago, Whitney Bartley said:

I really need some advice from you guys. I am so confused about which visa should i do. My fiancee lives in Jamaica and I am going to visit him in January and , I am not  sure should I marry him there and then apply for CR-1 when I return  or should I apply for K-1?  Which process is better process? Thanks in advance!

Overall, the CR1 is a superior visa as the spouse will get a GC as soon as they enter the US so no need to file for the AOS after a K1 marriage which adds cost and doesn’t allow the K1 spouse to travel or work legally in the US for several months.  For a time, the K1 application was processing faster through USCIS and the respective consulates, but that is not as big of an advantage for the K1 anymore.

 

Good Luck!


Visa Received : 2014-04-04 (K1 - see timeline for details)

US Entry : 2014-09-12

POE: Detroit

Marriage : 2014-09-27

I-765 Approved: 2015-01-09

I-485 Interview: 2015-03-11

I-485 Approved: 2015-03-13

Green Card Received: 2015-03-24 Yeah!!!

I-751 ROC Submitted: 2016-12-20

I-751 NOA Received:  2016-12-29

I-751 Biometrics Appt.:  2017-01-26

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N400 Filed:  2018-01-13

N400 Biometrics:  2018-02-22

N400 Interview:  2018-04-10

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36 minutes ago, Whitney Bartley said:

Which process is better process?

Everyone has different considerations. With the K-1 there is an AOS phase (average length varies wildly depending on U.S. location; from 3 to 22 months) and an EAD takes about 4 to 6 months. Work is not allowed without either a Green Card or EAD, and driver license policies vary by state (most states are restrictive with giving DLs to K-1 holders before they get a GC or EAD). Bank policies on opening accounts (or adding owners) also vary wildly. K-1 processing is about 2 to 3 months faster than CR-1 on average, but that is just getting inside the US; with the CR-1 there is NO AOS, thus avoiding the disadvantages of AOS I mentioned earlier.

Edited by TM92

Your Input Is Appreciated On This VJ Guide Proposal: 

 

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K-1

More expensive than CR-1    
Requires Adjustment of Status after marriage (expensive and requires a lot of paperwork)    
Spouse can not leave the US until she/he receives approved Advance Parole (approx 5-6 months)    
Spouse can not work until she/he receives EAD (approx 5-6 months)    
Some people have had problems with driver licenses, Social Security cards, leases, bank account during this period    
Spouse will not receive Green Card for many months after Adjustment of Status is filed.

 

CR-1    
Less expensive than K-1    
No Adjustment of Status  (I-485, I-131, I-765) required.    
Spouse can immediately travel outside the US    
Spouse is authorized to work immediately upon arrival.    
Spouse receives Social Security Card and Green Card within 2 or 3 weeks after entering the US    
Opening a bank account, getting a driver's license, etc. are very easily accomplished with GC, SS card, and passport.
Spouse has legal permanent Resident status IMMEDIATELY upon entry to US. 

My Final Analysis:  If you can marry your fiance in his/her country, CR-1 is a much, much better option


"Experience can be a tough teacher to those who fail to heed good advice"- Missileman, 12/6/18

 

First career- 20 year Retired E-8, USAF Missileer,

Second career-Retired Registered Nurse, experience in Labor& Delivery, Home Health, Adolescent & Adult Psych

Third career-Retired IT Developer & Database Administrator for surgical services dept.

 

Immigration Journey:

  • Texas Service Center after transfer from Nebraska
  • Consulate :Taipei, Taiwan
  • Marriage: 7/30/2015
  • I-130 NOA1 : 4/27/2016
  • I-130 Approved :9/8/2016
  • Case received at NVC: 10/11/2016                               
  • Case # and IIN#: 10/24/2016
  • AOS Fee Invoiced:10/24/2016  
  • AOS Fee Paid:10/25/2016
  • IV Fee Invoiced:10/24/2016  
  • IV Fee Paid:10/25/2016
  • DS-260 Completed: 10/28/16
  • Scan Date:11/9/2016
  • Supervisor review: 12/21/16 
  • Checklist: 1/13/17 
  • Case Complete: 4/10/17
  • Interview Date: 5/8/17 
  • Visa  "ISSUED": 5/10/17
  • Visa and Passport in hand/Flight to USA Booked!!!: 5/12/17  
  • POE Dallas DFW on June 22, 2017
  • SS Card received : 7/3/2017
  • 2-year Green Card received in mail: 7/15/17
 

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1 hour ago, TM92 said:

Everyone has different considerations. With the K-1 there is an AOS phase (average length varies wildly depending on U.S. location; from 3 to 22 months) and an EAD takes about 4 to 6 months. Work is not allowed without either a Green Card or EAD, and driver license policies vary by state (most states are restrictive with giving DLs to K-1 holders before they get a GC or EAD). Bank policies on opening accounts (or adding owners) also vary wildly. K-1 processing is about 2 to 3 months faster than CR-1 on average, but that is just getting inside the US; with the CR-1 there is NO AOS, thus avoiding the disadvantages of AOS I mentioned earlier.

Thank you so very much for the info!

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1 minute ago, missileman said:

K-1

More expensive than CR-1    
Requires Adjustment of Status after marriage (expensive and requires a lot of paperwork)    
Spouse can not leave the US until she/he receives approved Advance Parole (approx 5-6 months)    
Spouse can not work until she/he receives EAD (approx 5-6 months)    
Some people have had problems with driver licenses, Social Security cards, leases, bank account during this period    
Spouse will not receive Green Card for many months after Adjustment of Status is filed.

 

CR-1    
Less expensive than K-1    
No Adjustment of Status  (I-485, I-131, I-765) required.    
Spouse can immediately travel outside the US    
Spouse is authorized to work immediately upon arrival.    
Spouse receives Social Security Card and Green Card within 2 or 3 weeks after entering the US    
Opening a bank account, getting a driver's license, etc. are very easily accomplished with GC, SS card, and passport.
Spouse has legal permanent Resident status IMMEDIATELY upon entry to US. 

My Final Analysis:  If you can marry your fiance in his/her country, CR-1 is a much, much better option

This is very informative I’m think I’m going to for the CR-1 and marry him in January when I go to visit! Now I have read in other threads that income will also play a part in the process. My question is what is the income requirements? 

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16 minutes ago, Whitney Bartley said:

My question is what is the income requirements?

125% of U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Poverty Guidelines: https://www.uscis.gov/i-864p

Only 100% if you are on active duty in the U.S. armed forces

Edited by TM92

Your Input Is Appreciated On This VJ Guide Proposal: 

 

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This is a very interesting one which we also thought long and hard about. 

 

For or us it was all about how long we would have to spend away from each other living our lives in different countries.

 

We decided on doing K1 because I could travel to the us and spend 6 months there on my B2 visitor visa while awaiting for the USCIS process after petitioning the 129F. Then travel back to the uk for a 3 month period waiting for the final parts to come together. noa2, NVC, medical and embassy interview. Then fly back and spend the AOS process together in the US and I thought it would be nicer to get married in the US and then stay together not get married and then start our lives being apart.

 

The main issue for me however is the wait for EAD but we will just have to see how long that takes. I’m hoping for about 3-4 months but I realise every case is different. We will just have to cross our fingers. 

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2 hours ago, Steve&Chelsea said:

 

For or us it was all about how long we would have to spend away from each other living our lives in different countries.

 

We decided on doing K1 because I could travel to the us and spend 6 months there on my B2 visitor visa while awaiting for the USCIS process after petitioning the 129F. Then travel back to the uk for a 3 month period waiting for the final parts to come together. noa2, NVC, medical and embassy interview. Then fly back and spend the AOS process together in the US and I thought it would be nicer to get married in the US and then stay together not get married and then start our lives being apart.

 

The main issue for me however is the wait for EAD but we will just have to see how long that takes. I’m hoping for about 3-4 months but I realise every case is different. We will just have to cross our fingers. 

The advantages you have mentioned would apply to the CR-1 also. You can visit during the wait for that to be processed also. Your case is somewhat unusual in that you were able to take 6 months off work to spend that here visiting your fiancé. Most don’t have that luxury! 

 

You can also marry in the USA and file a CR-1. You don’t have to do a K-1 just because it would be “nice to get married in the USA”. We also got married in the US whilst I was visiting and then filed the CR-1. 

 

For us, being apart was being apart and it made no difference if we were married or not. It was equally awful to be apart when we were married as before we were married. Personally I’ve never understood that reasoning that people don’t want to be apart after their wedding. We had already been long-distance for several years before we married. 

 

As I am the breadwinner in our household, it was an obvious choice. Not being able to work for 4 months would have “cost” us $24,000 in my lost wages. And I didn’t spend years at university to sit at home and get “left behind” by the industry I work in. It was also about status to me. The K-1 is essentially an over-priced tourist visa that allows you to pay an even higher fee to stay if you get married within 90 days of arriving. Until AOS you have no real status here. With a CR-1 I was a permanent resident from day one, with the full rights that the status affords. Not trapped in limbo for months on end. 


 

 

 

 

 

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We chose the K-1 over the CR1 at the time because we wanted to be together sooner and i didn’t want us to be apart for longer. We had started saving money for the AOS phase way before we filed for the K1 just to over prepare. We also figured that with the cost of probably one or two extra trips to see each other with waiting out the CR1, it made more sense for us to do the K1 and spend that money on AOS. For us the K1 was perfect. But for most I would suggest the CR1 instead.

 

In hindsight, we were VERY lucky with our K1 and AOS experience. No RFEs, no issues with SSA, lease, bank etc (just DMV issues). Our AOS processed in less than 3 months with GC in hand at about 3 months.

 

I cant stress enough that this is all NOT NORMAL. I highly suggest looking into timelines of people with the same country of origin as the foreign fiancé and the same city as the US fiancé lives in. Checking these processing times and experiences will help you make a better call on the CR1 or K1.

 

Jamaica has a tough embassy from what I’ve read on here. So if I were you I’d get lots of visits in with your fiancé and file the CR1 instead. I would hate to see you wait all that time for the K1 and then have to do the CR1 because this has happened to many people at your embassy. There are very few cases on here where I would recommend the OP do the K1 over the CR1 even though I did the K1 myself


K-1 VISA

I129F Sent: 08/23/2017

NOA 1: 08/25/2017

NOA 2: 02/27/2018

NVC Received: 03/14/2018

NVC Case #: 03/15/2018

NVC Left: 03/24/2018

Embassy Received: 03/28/2018

Medical: 05/08/2018

Interview: 05/15/2018 

Visa issued: 05/18/2018

Visa received: 05/23/2018 

 

AOS

POE: 06/07/2018

SSN applied: 06/12/2018

SSN received: 06/28/2018

AOS Sent: 07/27/2018

Biometrics: 08/23/2018

Interview: 10/30/2018

Approval: 10/30/2018 

NOA2: 11/05/2018

Green card Received: 11/08/2018

 

 

NO MORE USCIS UNTIL ROC!!!!!😁

 

 

 

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Yes, it’s interesting to note that there are many K-1 people who wish they’d done the CR-1 or who would recommend the CR-1 to others but I’ve yet to see a post from CR-1 applicant who, at the end of it all, wished they’d done a K-1. 


 

 

 

 

 

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On 11/24/2018 at 12:22 PM, JFH said:

Yes, it’s interesting to note that there are many K-1 people who wish they’d done the CR-1 or who would recommend the CR-1 to others but I’ve yet to see a post from CR-1 applicant who, at the end of it all, wished they’d done a K-1. 

I'd have to be paid to have done the K1 and even then it wasn't worth it.  If my family had gotten sick or seriously injured while I couldn't travel I'd never forgive myself for not being there. 


You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.  - Dr. Seuss

 

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