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Hello! My fiance (USA) and I (CANADIAN) have been together for about 3 years now and are planning on having me come to the USA on the K-1 Visa.

If any of you wouldn’t mind sharing your personal experience with the K-1 Visa I would be very grateful. I also have many many questions about this visa and how it works so if anyone is able to help me by answering some of my questions I would be very grateful for that as well. Experience from anyone, not just Canadians, are welcome! I’ll list some of the questions that I have below although I feel as if I will always have more and more questions.

 

1. ON the USCIS website there is no mention of having to fill out forms 1-134 or I-864 but they are both mentioned on the travel.state.gov website but they don't guarantee that they will be requested. I am wondering what the circumstances are that those forms would be requested. Also, Is the income level based on only the sponsor or their entire household?

 

2. As per the medical examination that is required for the K-1 Visa, I was wondering if anyone knew the average cost of the exam and the average time until the results are ready to be picked up. My reasoning is that I will have to travel to Montreal for the examination AND the interview so I would like to be properly prepared for the trip. hopefully only one trip can be made as it is very expensive to fly to Montreal. 

 

3. I have heard that once you enter the USA on the K-1 visa and get merried that you cannot leave the USA for 6 months although it says nothing about this rule on travel.state.gov or the USCIS website. Does anyone know where it states that this is true?

 

4. Just to be clear, once we file form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status and get my green card, how long do I have to have my green card before I can technically become a citizen? How does one go about that when the time comes?

 

5. Is it worth is to file I-765, Application for Employment Authorization? I can work after I file I-485 so will it take longer for I-765 or I-485 to be reviewed and accepted?

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Posted (edited)
5 minutes ago, dledingham said:

Hello! My fiance (USA) and I (CANADIAN) have been together for about 3 years now and are planning on having me come to the USA on the K-1 Visa.

If any of you wouldn’t mind sharing your personal experience with the K-1 Visa I would be very grateful. I also have many many questions about this visa and how it works so if anyone is able to help me by answering some of my questions I would be very grateful for that as well. Experience from anyone, not just Canadians, are welcome! I’ll list some of the questions that I have below although I feel as if I will always have more and more questions.

 

1. ON the USCIS website there is no mention of having to fill out forms 1-134 or I-864 but they are both mentioned on the travel.state.gov website but they don't guarantee that they will be requested. I am wondering what the circumstances are that those forms would be requested. Also, Is the income level based on only the sponsor or their entire household?

 

2. As per the medical examination that is required for the K-1 Visa, I was wondering if anyone knew the average cost of the exam and the average time until the results are ready to be picked up. My reasoning is that I will have to travel to Montreal for the examination AND the interview so I would like to be properly prepared for the trip. hopefully only one trip can be made as it is very expensive to fly to Montreal. 

 

3. I have heard that once you enter the USA on the K-1 visa and get merried that you cannot leave the USA for 6 months although it says nothing about this rule on travel.state.gov or the USCIS website. Does anyone know where it states that this is true?

 

4. Just to be clear, once we file form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status and get my green card, how long do I have to have my green card before I can technically become a citizen? How does one go about that when the time comes?

 

5. Is it worth is to file I-765, Application for Employment Authorization? I can work after I file I-485 so will it take longer for I-765 or I-485 to be reviewed and accepted?

1) at the interview (i134)

2) best asked in Canadian regional forum 

3) you can leave anytime, however,  if you don't have approved advance parole you will lose your k1 status and will have abandoned your adjustment of status application 

4)  three years resident since and continuing marital relationship with USC 

5) yes it's worth it and no you cannot work until employment authorization is approved 

Edited by payxibka

YMMV

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It is vetter spouse visa, you can work once you are in usa.

Spouse visa is cgeaper too.

And while you are waiting you can visit each other, 

535 send the k1 petition, plus medical exam and visa interview, and once in usa 1225 for adjusment status.

And you can not wortk until ead is garantee.

Just think in that, and as you and your fiance can visit each other , it is better spouse visa, it is cheaper

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Posted (edited)
  1. USCIS handles the I-129F petition and AOS. DOS handles visas. The I-134 is needed for the visa. The I-864 will be needed for AOS - when you get to that stage of the process. The reason you don't see them mentioned in a section is because they don't apply at that part of the process.
  2. Defer to Canadian members...or check the Canada regional forum.
  3. You can leave at any time...getting back in is the problem. Once you enter on the K-1 visa, the visa is cancelled (it's single use). Once you file for AOS, you are granted a period of authorized stay while your case is pending. If you exit the US while AOS is pending and without a valid Advance Parole (AP) document, your claim to permanent residence (AOS application) will be abandoned. AP is taking ~4-7 months right now, and can be filed alongside AOS at no extra cost.
  4. Once you have the green card (AOS is approved) - and assuming you remain married to a USC for the entire period - you will qualify for naturalization after 3 years. Note that AOS itself is taking anywhere from a few months to 18+ months.
    1. If you are not married to a USC for the 3 years, you can qualify under the 5 year rule instead.
  5. No extra fee for the I-765 when filed alongside or due to an I-485. It will not slow down the I-485 processing either (it's handled by the NBC whereas AOS is handled by the local field office).
    1. Note that this is also taking ~4-7 months for approval....so you won't be working for a while either way.
Edited by geowrian

Timelines:

Spoiler

AOS (I-485 + I-131 + I-765):

9/25/17: sent forms to Chicago

9/27/17: received by USCIS

10/4/17: NOA1 electronic notification received

10/10/17: NOA1 hard copy received. Social Security card being issued in married name (3rd attempt!)

10/14/17: Biometrics appointment notice received

10/25/17: Biometrics

1/2/18: EAD + AP approved (no website update)

1/5/18: EAD + AP mailed

1/8/18: EAD + AP approval notice hardcopies received

1/10/18: EAD + AP received

9/5/18: Interview scheduled notice

10/17/18: Interview

10/24/18: Green card produced notice

10/25/18: Formal approval

10/31/18: Green card received

 

K-1:

Spoiler

I-129F

12/1/17: sent

12/14/17: NOA1 hard copy received

3/10/17: RFE (IMB verification)

3/22/17: RFE response received

3/24/17: Approved!

3/30/17: NOA2 hard copy received

 

NVC

4/6/2017: Received

4/12/2017: Sent to Riyadh embassy

4/16/2017: Case received at Riyadh embassy

4/21/2017: Request case transfer to Manila, approved 4/24/2017

 

K-1

5/1/2017: Case received by Manila (1 week embassy transfer??? Lucky~)

7/13/2017: Interview: APPROVED!!!

7/19/2017: Visa in hand

8/15/2017: POE

 

 

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7 minutes ago, mytruelove18 said:

It is vetter spouse visa, you can work once you are in usa.

Spouse visa is cgeaper too.

And while you are waiting you can visit each other, 

535 send the k1 petition, plus medical exam and visa interview, and once in usa 1225 for adjusment status.

And you can not wortk until ead is garantee.

Just think in that, and as you and your fiance can visit each other , it is better spouse visa, it is cheaper

After putting all of the prices together I thought that the K-1 was cheaper. Also doesnt the spouse visa (k-3) take longer? one of the reasons we picked the K-1 is because I don't want to get married and then have to live apart until I get my visa 😞

 

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Posted (edited)
2 minutes ago, dledingham said:

After putting all of the prices together I thought that the K-1 was cheaper. Also doesnt the spouse visa (k-3) take longer? one of the reasons we picked the K-1 is because I don't want to get married and then have to live apart until I get my visa 😞

 

K-1 is cheaper for the visa, but AOS alone is another $1225...making it more expensive (CR-1 visa does not require AOS).

 

K-3 is effectively dead. Only 6 were issued last fiscal year.

K-3 requires that you be married anyway.

 

Edit: CR-1/IR-1 is the spousal visa. K-3 is technically as well, but it's obsolete as noted above.

Edited by geowrian

Timelines:

Spoiler

AOS (I-485 + I-131 + I-765):

9/25/17: sent forms to Chicago

9/27/17: received by USCIS

10/4/17: NOA1 electronic notification received

10/10/17: NOA1 hard copy received. Social Security card being issued in married name (3rd attempt!)

10/14/17: Biometrics appointment notice received

10/25/17: Biometrics

1/2/18: EAD + AP approved (no website update)

1/5/18: EAD + AP mailed

1/8/18: EAD + AP approval notice hardcopies received

1/10/18: EAD + AP received

9/5/18: Interview scheduled notice

10/17/18: Interview

10/24/18: Green card produced notice

10/25/18: Formal approval

10/31/18: Green card received

 

K-1:

Spoiler

I-129F

12/1/17: sent

12/14/17: NOA1 hard copy received

3/10/17: RFE (IMB verification)

3/22/17: RFE response received

3/24/17: Approved!

3/30/17: NOA2 hard copy received

 

NVC

4/6/2017: Received

4/12/2017: Sent to Riyadh embassy

4/16/2017: Case received at Riyadh embassy

4/21/2017: Request case transfer to Manila, approved 4/24/2017

 

K-1

5/1/2017: Case received by Manila (1 week embassy transfer??? Lucky~)

7/13/2017: Interview: APPROVED!!!

7/19/2017: Visa in hand

8/15/2017: POE

 

 

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5 minutes ago, dledingham said:

After putting all of the prices together I thought that the K-1 was cheaper. Also doesnt the spouse visa (k-3) take longer? one of the reasons we picked the K-1 is because I don't want to get married and then have to live apart until I get my visa 😞

 

The time apart (K-1 vs CR-1) will be roughly the same for Montreal.

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1 minute ago, Jorgedig said:

The time apart (K-1 vs CR-1) will be roughly the same for Montreal.

Pretty close - just NVC processing time, which is "only" a couple to few months.


Timelines:

Spoiler

AOS (I-485 + I-131 + I-765):

9/25/17: sent forms to Chicago

9/27/17: received by USCIS

10/4/17: NOA1 electronic notification received

10/10/17: NOA1 hard copy received. Social Security card being issued in married name (3rd attempt!)

10/14/17: Biometrics appointment notice received

10/25/17: Biometrics

1/2/18: EAD + AP approved (no website update)

1/5/18: EAD + AP mailed

1/8/18: EAD + AP approval notice hardcopies received

1/10/18: EAD + AP received

9/5/18: Interview scheduled notice

10/17/18: Interview

10/24/18: Green card produced notice

10/25/18: Formal approval

10/31/18: Green card received

 

K-1:

Spoiler

I-129F

12/1/17: sent

12/14/17: NOA1 hard copy received

3/10/17: RFE (IMB verification)

3/22/17: RFE response received

3/24/17: Approved!

3/30/17: NOA2 hard copy received

 

NVC

4/6/2017: Received

4/12/2017: Sent to Riyadh embassy

4/16/2017: Case received at Riyadh embassy

4/21/2017: Request case transfer to Manila, approved 4/24/2017

 

K-1

5/1/2017: Case received by Manila (1 week embassy transfer??? Lucky~)

7/13/2017: Interview: APPROVED!!!

7/19/2017: Visa in hand

8/15/2017: POE

 

 

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6 minutes ago, geowrian said:

K-1 is cheaper for the visa, but AOS alone is another $1225...making it more expensive (CR-1 visa does not require AOS).

 

K-3 is effectively dead. Only 6 were issued last fiscal year.

K-3 requires that you be married anyway.

 

Edit: CR-1/IR-1 is the spousal visa. K-3 is technically as well, but it's obsolete as noted above.

I cant find very much online about the CR-1/IR-1 visas at all and i just learned about them today. They haven't come up in my research at all.

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Posted (edited)

Also consider AOS processing times for the local office where you will be living. I used to live in Cleveland, OH for about 30 years ( Don't tell anyone, the "mistake by the lake" is not my first choice) but my friend brought his fiancee over on a K1 to Cleveland, married, filed AOS, and she had her Green card in 3 months, well closer to 4, but she had her interview within 3 months of filing AOS, ead, AP, etc. I'm in Vegas now, and filed for my wife's AOS on February of 2019, and I am hoping to see an interview in February 2020 maybe March 2020 if I am lucky. Was able to expedite the EAD/AP card, so that only took 83 days to get, but it is usually 4-6 months. If you were moving to Cleveland lets say, you would have your green card 4 months after filing AOS more than likely, so that would be the way to go. Lots of things to look at.

Edited by Loren Y

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10 minutes ago, dledingham said:

After putting all of the prices together I thought that the K-1 was cheaper. Also doesnt the spouse visa (k-3) take longer? one of the reasons we picked the K-1 is because I don't want to get married and then have to live apart until I get my visa 😞

 

There is more to the k1 than simply the visa 


YMMV

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1 minute ago, dledingham said:

I cant find very much online about the CR-1/IR-1 visas at all and i just learned about them today. They haven't come up in my research at all.

There are tens of thousands of CR-1 and IR-1 visas issued annually. K-1 is actually less common.


Timelines:

Spoiler

AOS (I-485 + I-131 + I-765):

9/25/17: sent forms to Chicago

9/27/17: received by USCIS

10/4/17: NOA1 electronic notification received

10/10/17: NOA1 hard copy received. Social Security card being issued in married name (3rd attempt!)

10/14/17: Biometrics appointment notice received

10/25/17: Biometrics

1/2/18: EAD + AP approved (no website update)

1/5/18: EAD + AP mailed

1/8/18: EAD + AP approval notice hardcopies received

1/10/18: EAD + AP received

9/5/18: Interview scheduled notice

10/17/18: Interview

10/24/18: Green card produced notice

10/25/18: Formal approval

10/31/18: Green card received

 

K-1:

Spoiler

I-129F

12/1/17: sent

12/14/17: NOA1 hard copy received

3/10/17: RFE (IMB verification)

3/22/17: RFE response received

3/24/17: Approved!

3/30/17: NOA2 hard copy received

 

NVC

4/6/2017: Received

4/12/2017: Sent to Riyadh embassy

4/16/2017: Case received at Riyadh embassy

4/21/2017: Request case transfer to Manila, approved 4/24/2017

 

K-1

5/1/2017: Case received by Manila (1 week embassy transfer??? Lucky~)

7/13/2017: Interview: APPROVED!!!

7/19/2017: Visa in hand

8/15/2017: POE

 

 

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2 minutes ago, dledingham said:

I cant find very much online about the CR-1/IR-1 visas at all and i just learned about them today. They haven't come up in my research at all.

LOL really??  Also known as spousal visas.  There is a plethora of info on them here on VJ and elsewhere.

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Just now, Jorgedig said:

LOL really??  Also known as spousal visas.  There is a plethora of info on them here on VJ and elsewhere.

YES! USCIS and Travel.state.gov have been the least bit helpful in all of this. as of right now I havent been able to find anything about the CR-1/IR-1 on the USCIS website

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1 minute ago, dledingham said:

YES! USCIS and Travel.state.gov have been the least bit helpful in all of this. as of right now I havent been able to find anything about the CR-1/IR-1 on the USCIS website

Well, that is because USCIS deals with petitions, not visas.  You should read the guides here at length.

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