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saedwards

CR-1 Visa vs K-1 Visa

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Hi.

 

Me (UK) and my beautiful Fiancé (US) got engaged in February and are currently looking into visas, she had a meeting with an immigration lawyer yesterday. Who told her that if I came to the USA on an ESTA visa program with the intent of getting married it is very risky and the regulations on the ESTA contradict one another if I came to the states to get married, so the K-1 Visa would be better suited for us. 

 

After reading a lot online on the both of the visa I am not to sure what to think, can anyone advise on some of the questions I have below.

 

1) Has anyone had any issues at POE to the USA when going there to get married on a VWP?

 

2) Do we have to apply for the CR-1 while I am still in the USA, or can I go home?

 

3) What is the turn usual around with the CR-1 from applying to getting Visa Approved?

 

4) If the CR-1 Gets Approved, would I be able to travel back home (UK) if there was an emergency after entering the USA or is there a time constraint?

 

5) Would I be able to work straight away when I land after the CR-1 gets approved?

 

6) While in the process of the CR-1 application, can I travel freely between the UK and US?

 

7) On the K-1 Visa can I travel back home if there was an emergency?

 

8) On the K-1 Visa what is the usual turn around to be able to work?

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, saedwards said:

Hi.

 

Me (UK) and my beautiful Fiancé (US) got engaged in February and are currently looking into visas, she had a meeting with an immigration lawyer yesterday. Who told her that if I came to the USA on an ESTA visa program with the intent of getting married it is very risky and the regulations on the ESTA contradict one another if I came to the states to get married, so the K-1 Visa would be better suited for us. 

 

First of all, your lawyer is wrong. Coming to the US with the intent to marry, STAY AND ADJUST STATUS is illegal. Coming to the US with the intent to marry and return back home to pursue the legal immigration path (CR-1) is perfectly fine.

 

After reading a lot online on the both of the visa I am not to sure what to think, can anyone advise on some of the questions I have below.

 

1) Has anyone had any issues at POE to the USA when going there to get married on a VWP? It's up to the discretion of the CBP officer, but I know multiple people that got married in the US and returned home, no problem at POE. But no one can guarantee that CBP would let you in, but that's even if you just came to visit on an ESTA. If you're worried, why not marry in the UK?

 

2) Do we have to apply for the CR-1 while I am still in the USA, or can I go home? Doesn't matter where you apply from

 

3) What is the turn usual around with the CR-1 from applying to getting Visa Approved? 12-15 months currently

 

4) If the CR-1 Gets Approved, would I be able to travel back home (UK) if there was an emergency after entering the USA or is there a time constraint? That's the good thing about CR-1, the moment you enter the USA with your CR-1 visa you're a LPR and you'll be able to travel and work right away

 

5) Would I be able to work straight away when I land after the CR-1 gets approved? Yup

 

6) While in the process of the CR-1 application, can I travel freely between the UK and US? Yup, but again, up to the discretion of the CBP officer 

 

7) On the K-1 Visa can I travel back home if there was an emergency? Only after you obtained AP, what currently takes 4.5-6.5 months after filing AOS, but processing times seem to go up more and more.

 

😎 On the K-1 Visa what is the usual turn around to be able to work? Same time as AP.

Please educate yourself on both processes by reading the guides (top of the page) on this website. They hold a lot of info and might make it easier to make the decision with which visa you wanna go 

Edited by C90

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{Mod action}

 

Moved to “What visa do I need - Family Based Immigration


“When starting an immigration journey, the best advice is to understand that sacrifices have to be made; whether it is time, money, or separation or a combination of any or all.” - NuestraUnion

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Our valued member and contributor @missileman Has a very thorough and comprehensive comparison of the two visas. Hopefully he will be along to post it.


“When starting an immigration journey, the best advice is to understand that sacrifices have to be made; whether it is time, money, or separation or a combination of any or all.” - NuestraUnion

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The fees are not correct on the table I provided the link for. As of early 2019, the total U.S. government visa fees for K1 is now $2,025. For CR1 it is $980. That is just for the visa. There are other expenses, such as medicals, travel, moving costs, etc. 

 

It used to be that K1 was more expensive but faster. That is no longer true. If you want freedom to work and travel after emigrating then CR1 may be the one for you. But you may have other considerations to factor in, so keep reading before you commit to one course of action. 

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Every couple has their own priorities, and each couple must decide which visa is better for their situation.

K-1
    Slightly faster arrival in the US (currently about 3 months sooner)    
    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
    Slightly slower arrival in the US (currently about 3 months later)

    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.
   


                               :idea:MSC (National Benefits Center) I-751 filers- Please add your data :idea:                          https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1Id1duRRByZHJmhEzl9N25GqwzcnUyLCR4e4N9W6zGLg/edit#gid=0

 

Retired 20 year US Air Force Missileer

Retired Registered Nurse with practice in Labor/Delivery, Home Health, Adolescent Psych, Adult Psych

Retired IT Professional, Software Developer, Database Manager

 

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
  • I751 mailed to Dallas PO Box: 3/28/2019
  • I-797 extension letter  for ROC dated 4/2/2019  MSCxxxxxxxxxx received: 4/6/2019
  • Biometrics apt received for 4/25/2019: on 4/12/2019
 

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21 hours ago, missileman said:

Every couple has their own priorities, and each couple must decide which visa is better for their situation.

K-1
    Slightly faster arrival in the US (currently about 3 months sooner)    
    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
    Slightly slower arrival in the US (currently about 3 months later)

    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.
   

You need to add the positive of the K1, can return spouse if defective. /jk if someone takes me serious.

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