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Mia95

Similar situation?

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My Fiance and I are planning to apply for the K1 visa. I been reading and searching a lot about the process and so on. It seems like the process is very long and but it also depends on the situation. With all the reading and searching I have done, I haven't crossed a similar story or situation like ours. So my question is; is the process different when you are in the military(my fiance), or that I am living in Europe. Also, I have been in USA 4 times to visit my fiance, within 6 months, the last visit, I stayed for 90 days, is that it going to make the process shorter/easier or is that even going to affect the process at all?
Side note: He used to be in Europe, and we would see each other every 2-3 weeks. 

- We are also not sure if the K1 visa is the best fit for us, but it just seems like it's faster than the Spouse visa( with the spouse visa, I won't be able to visit the USA, after we file for I-130).

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Denmark
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Having more or longer visits won't make the process any easier or faster, it does help to prove bona fide relationship, but it won't affect processing time. Who told you that you can't visit the USA after filing I130? That's far from true. Many who have filed I130 for CR1 do, can, and have visited during the process, my husband included. You will have to carry proof of ties to your home country to prove you won't stay when you visit, but that applies to if you petition for K1 as well. Entry is never guaranteed


Our CR1 Journey:

 

USCIS Stage:

  • Feb 14 2019: NOA1 (NSC)
  • July 31 2019: I129f NOA1
  • Sep 19 2019: I129f NOA2 (Denied - 50 days from NOA1)
  • Sep 19 2019: I130 NOA2 (Approved - 217 days from NOA1)

 

NVC Stage:

  • Sep 27 2019: Sent to Department of State
  • Oct 31 2019: Case number received (34 days since sent)
  • Nov 1 2019: IV & AOS fees received & paid
  • Nov 14 2019: IV & AOS submitted
  • Dec 18 2019: All docs accepted, but one additional doc requested (5 weeks from submission)
  • Dec 18 2019: Requested doc submitted
  • Feb 19 2020: Documentarily Qualified (9 weeks from 2nd submission, 14 weeks from first submission)

 

Interview Stage:

  • Mar 11 2020: Interview letter received
  • Apr 1 2020: Interview date
  • Mar 17 2020: Interview cancelled due to COVID-19
  • August 3 2020: Rescheduled letter received, new appointment August 25 2020
  • August 25 2020: Visa approved at interview! (558 days from NOA1)

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Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Philippines
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2 minutes ago, Mia95 said:

My Fiance and I are planning to apply for the K1 visa. I been reading and searching a lot about the process and so on. It seems like the process is very long and but it also depends on the situation. With all the reading and searching I have done, I haven't crossed a similar story or situation like ours. So my question is; is the process different when you are in the military(my fiance), or that I am living in Europe. Also, I have been in USA 4 times to visit my fiance, within 6 months, the last visit, I stayed for 90 days, is that it going to make the process shorter/easier or is that even going to affect the process at all?
Side note: He used to be in Europe, and we would see each other every 2-3 weeks. 

- We are also not sure if the K1 visa is the best fit for us, but it just seems like it's faster than the Spouse visa( with the spouse visa, I won't be able to visit the USA, after we file for I-130).

Speed should not the only factor in your decision, you may actually regret the k1 decision 

 

Who said you cannot visit after the i130 is filed?


YMMV

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3 minutes ago, LilyJ said:

Having more or longer visits won't make the process any easier or faster, it does help to prove bona fide relationship, but it won't affect processing time. Who told you that you can't visit the USA after filing I130? That's far from true. Many who have filed I130 for CR1 do, can, and have visited during the process, my husband included. You will have to carry proof of ties to your home country to prove you won't stay when you visit, but that applies to if you petition for K1 as well. Entry is never guaranteed

I spoke with the embassy in Denmark(btw are you from Denmark, I see the flag :)) and I was told, that it will be hard to prove at the US border because they can see the I-130 petition. 

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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 
    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 

    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.
  �


 

1 minute ago, Mia95 said:

I spoke with the embassy in Denmark(btw are you from Denmark, I see the flag :)) and I was told, that it will be hard to prove at the US border because they can see the I-130 petition. 

Many people visit with a pending I-130......many.


"The immigration process demands a great deal of knowledge, planning, time, patience, and money.  A deficit in any of these areas can spell heartbreak."

   -GB, "old man of much life experience"

 

Retired 20 year United States Air Force Missileer (Retired E-8)

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

Retired IT Professional, Software Developer, Database Manager

 

 

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Denmark
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4 minutes ago, Mia95 said:

I spoke with the embassy in Denmark(btw are you from Denmark, I see the flag :)) and I was told, that it will be hard to prove at the US border because they can see the I-130 petition. 

Yes, my husband is from Denmark :) Yes, they can see the I130 petition. They can also see the I129f petition. You are still allowed to visit though, and many successfully do. You will have to show you intend to return to your country whether you're filing for K1 or CR1, it will be the same issue. My husband was granted entry even though he didn't bring any ties other than his return flight and a copy of our petition approval when he visited, they didn't even look at either of them. He was let in once he mentioned that we are going through the CR1 process, I think most of what they care about is that you are going to tell the truth and be transparent. If you bring things like leases, employment letters, things like that, that's all proof of returning after your visit, and this applies to K1 too keep in mind. Not just CR1. You may also want to keep in mind, with a K1, once you receive the visa you will not be able to work or leave the US for upwards of half a year

Edited by LilyJ

Our CR1 Journey:

 

USCIS Stage:

  • Feb 14 2019: NOA1 (NSC)
  • July 31 2019: I129f NOA1
  • Sep 19 2019: I129f NOA2 (Denied - 50 days from NOA1)
  • Sep 19 2019: I130 NOA2 (Approved - 217 days from NOA1)

 

NVC Stage:

  • Sep 27 2019: Sent to Department of State
  • Oct 31 2019: Case number received (34 days since sent)
  • Nov 1 2019: IV & AOS fees received & paid
  • Nov 14 2019: IV & AOS submitted
  • Dec 18 2019: All docs accepted, but one additional doc requested (5 weeks from submission)
  • Dec 18 2019: Requested doc submitted
  • Feb 19 2020: Documentarily Qualified (9 weeks from 2nd submission, 14 weeks from first submission)

 

Interview Stage:

  • Mar 11 2020: Interview letter received
  • Apr 1 2020: Interview date
  • Mar 17 2020: Interview cancelled due to COVID-19
  • August 3 2020: Rescheduled letter received, new appointment August 25 2020
  • August 25 2020: Visa approved at interview! (558 days from NOA1)

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9 minutes ago, payxibka said:

Speed should not the only factor in your decision, you may actually regret the k1 decision 

 

Who said you cannot visit after the i130 is filed?

I was told by the embassy that it will be hard to prove at the border, because they are able to see the I-130 petition. But you never know I geuss, even with the I129F

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Just now, LilyJ said:

Yes, my husband is from Denmark :) Yes, they can see the I130 petition. They can also see the I129f petition. You are still allowed to visit though, and many successfully do. You will have to show you intend to return to your country whether you're filing for K1 or CR1, it will be the same issue. My husband was granted entry even though he didn't bring any ties other than his return flight and a copy of our petition approval when he visited, they didn't even look at either of them. He was let in once he mentioned that we are going through the CR1 process, I think most of what they care about is that you are going to tell the truth and be transparent. If you bring things like leases, employment letters, things like that, that's all proof of returning after your visit, and this applies to K1 too keep in mind. Not just CR1

Awesome, I am also from Denmark !. How long was your process? 
We have considered the CR1, but the information we got by the embbassy about traveling to the USA, made us think that K1 is better, since its faster.  
- For how long does your husband stay, ad how often does he travel to the USA. 

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Denmark
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10 minutes ago, Mia95 said:

Awesome, I am also from Denmark !. How long was your process? 
We have considered the CR1, but the information we got by the embbassy about traveling to the USA, made us think that K1 is better, since its faster.  
- For how long does your husband stay, ad how often does he travel to the USA. 

We are 11 months in and expecting an interview in Stockholm, hopefully, around March. We had a snag with needing an extra document at NVC, otherwise we would have likely had an interview in February

K1 is not necessarily better, since you will not be able to work for around half a year, which is a big factor as to why we did not choose to go with K1, and K1 actually is not much faster than CR1 these days, yes it is faster but not by much, a couple months maybe. You'll have the same issues with visiting no matter which visa route you go though. Since starting the process I have been to Denmark once for 2.5 months, then my husband came here to visit the US for 1.5 month, but that's only since we started the process, in total he has been to the US 5 or 6 times ranging from a week to 2.5 months, most visits around a month though. We also got married in the US, and then he returned to Denmark for us to go through the process

For us we chose CR1 over K1 because: It is cheaper (adjustment of status from K1 is $1225), and my husband will get to work immediately once he gets here. In our case, the extra expense of K1 added to that we would only have 1 stream of income could not justify the couple months less of processing time. We also wanted to be able to plan our wedding at our own pace rather than the government's 🤪 But, everybody's case is different. For us the K1 just did not have the long-term benefits like the CR1 that we felt were necessary for us

Edited by LilyJ

Our CR1 Journey:

 

USCIS Stage:

  • Feb 14 2019: NOA1 (NSC)
  • July 31 2019: I129f NOA1
  • Sep 19 2019: I129f NOA2 (Denied - 50 days from NOA1)
  • Sep 19 2019: I130 NOA2 (Approved - 217 days from NOA1)

 

NVC Stage:

  • Sep 27 2019: Sent to Department of State
  • Oct 31 2019: Case number received (34 days since sent)
  • Nov 1 2019: IV & AOS fees received & paid
  • Nov 14 2019: IV & AOS submitted
  • Dec 18 2019: All docs accepted, but one additional doc requested (5 weeks from submission)
  • Dec 18 2019: Requested doc submitted
  • Feb 19 2020: Documentarily Qualified (9 weeks from 2nd submission, 14 weeks from first submission)

 

Interview Stage:

  • Mar 11 2020: Interview letter received
  • Apr 1 2020: Interview date
  • Mar 17 2020: Interview cancelled due to COVID-19
  • August 3 2020: Rescheduled letter received, new appointment August 25 2020
  • August 25 2020: Visa approved at interview! (558 days from NOA1)

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32 minutes ago, LilyJ said:

We are 11 months in and expecting an interview in Stockholm, hopefully, around March. We had a snag with needing an extra document at NVC, otherwise we would have likely had an interview in February

K1 is not necessarily better, since you will not be able to work for around half a year, which is a big factor as to why we did not choose to go with K1, and K1 actually is not much faster than CR1 these days, yes it is faster but not by much, a couple months maybe. You'll have the same issues with visiting no matter which visa route you go though. Since starting the process I have been to Denmark once for 2.5 months, then my husband came here to visit the US for 1.5 month, but that's only since we started the process, in total he has been to the US 5 or 6 times ranging from a week to 2.5 months, most visits around a month though. We also got married in the US, and then he returned to Denmark for us to go through the process

For us we chose CR1 over K1 because: It is cheaper (adjustment of status from K1 is $1225), and my husband will get to work immediately once he gets here. In our case, the extra expense of K1 added to that we would only have 1 stream of income could not justify the couple months less of processing time. We also wanted to be able to plan our wedding at our own pace rather than the government's 🤪 But, everybody's case is different. For us the K1 just did not have the long-term benefits like the CR1 that we felt were necessary for us

Alright, well 11 months isn't bad if he was able to visit you in the US. 
It is very hard to figure out whats the best option/route, especially because of his job, he won't be able to travel that much to Denmark, so it's me that will do the most traveling to the US.  The K1 visa is more expensive, but we thought since it might be faster, we won't have to do that much traveling, which also cost a lot. I think that we will reconsider CR1, after hearing your story

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Denmark
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3 minutes ago, Mia95 said:

Alright, well 11 months isn't bad if he was able to visit you in the US. 
It is very hard to figure out whats the best option/route, especially because of his job, he won't be able to travel that much to Denmark, so it's me that will do the most traveling to the US.  The K1 visa is more expensive, but we thought since it might be faster, we won't have to do that much traveling, which also cost a lot. I think that we will reconsider CR1, after hearing your story

No matter which you chose, you should be fine to visit, even though my husband brought neither, having employment letter or a lease helps even more when visiting, just make sure your visits are not excessively long, this applies to both visas whether K1 or CR1 since a long visit can make them suspicious

 

If he does travel to DK too (after if you get married), he should also be prepared to possibly be questioned, at least in Amsterdam airport, they were very suspicious of me, and those tall guys are intimidating 🤣 I was actually scared that was not going to be let in! I don't know if they are able to see if you are married to an EU/Schengen zone citizen or what, but they sure asked a lot of questions (including if I was planning on immigrating to DK) until I said that it's my husband who is going to immigrate to the US and not the other way around. I don't think he'd need to bring any paperwork to be let into Europe but they might do some questioning!

 

As for which visa, it mostly comes down to: if you will be ok with not being able to work (so you 2 will have to be able to support yourselves with just your husband's income for a while), possibly having trouble with getting a license meaning not being able to drive, and not being able to leave the US, for ~6 months when on K1
I would read the pros and cons that missileman posted, and carefully consider them to find out which visa will be best for you, CR1 is, imo, superior in many ways from K1, but that doesn't mean that CR1 is always the right answer for everybody


Our CR1 Journey:

 

USCIS Stage:

  • Feb 14 2019: NOA1 (NSC)
  • July 31 2019: I129f NOA1
  • Sep 19 2019: I129f NOA2 (Denied - 50 days from NOA1)
  • Sep 19 2019: I130 NOA2 (Approved - 217 days from NOA1)

 

NVC Stage:

  • Sep 27 2019: Sent to Department of State
  • Oct 31 2019: Case number received (34 days since sent)
  • Nov 1 2019: IV & AOS fees received & paid
  • Nov 14 2019: IV & AOS submitted
  • Dec 18 2019: All docs accepted, but one additional doc requested (5 weeks from submission)
  • Dec 18 2019: Requested doc submitted
  • Feb 19 2020: Documentarily Qualified (9 weeks from 2nd submission, 14 weeks from first submission)

 

Interview Stage:

  • Mar 11 2020: Interview letter received
  • Apr 1 2020: Interview date
  • Mar 17 2020: Interview cancelled due to COVID-19
  • August 3 2020: Rescheduled letter received, new appointment August 25 2020
  • August 25 2020: Visa approved at interview! (558 days from NOA1)

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8 minutes ago, LilyJ said:

No matter which you chose, you should be fine to visit, even though my husband brought neither, having employment letter or a lease helps even more when visiting, just make sure your visits are not excessively long, this applies to both visas whether K1 or CR1 since a long visit can make them suspicious

 

If he does travel to DK too (after if you get married), he should also be prepared to possibly be questioned, at least in Amsterdam airport, they were very suspicious of me, and those tall guys are intimidating 🤣 I was actually scared that was not going to be let in! I don't know if they are able to see if you are married to an EU/Schengen zone citizen or what, but they sure asked a lot of questions (including if I was planning on immigrating to DK) until I said that it's my husband who is going to immigrate to the US and not the other way around. I don't think he'd need to bring any paperwork to be let into Europe but they might do some questioning!

 

As for which visa, it mostly comes down to: if you will be ok with not being able to work (so you 2 will have to be able to support yourselves with just your husband's income for a while), possibly having trouble with getting a license meaning not being able to drive, and not being able to leave the US, for ~6 months when on K1
I would read the pros and cons that missileman posted, and carefully consider them to find out which visa will be best for you, CR1 is, imo, superior in many ways from K1, but that doesn't mean that CR1 is always the right answer for everybody

Thanks for the tip, about him visiting Denmark  Its always good to be prepared. 

k1visa: what kind or why is there trouble getting a driving license? I have an international driver's license, that I always bring with me when I visit the USA, I won't be able to use that until an American drive license. 

Do you know, what can make the process faster in CR1?

Its also hard to know what is the best route, because is kind pointless to start the K1 visa process, if it's going to end up taking as long the CR1 visa

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Denmark
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2 minutes ago, Mia95 said:

Thanks for the tip, about him visiting Denmark  Its always good to be prepared. 

k1visa: what kind or why is there trouble getting a driving license? I have an international driver's license, that I always bring with me when I visit the USA, I won't be able to use that until an American drive license. 

Do you know, what can make the process faster in CR1?

Its also hard to know what is the best route, because is kind pointless to start the K1 visa process, if it's going to end up taking as long the CR1 visa

Yes it is, though maybe the border patrol in Amsterdam are just very strict, they seemed to be grilling everybody when I was there

You may be able to use your international drivers license for part of the time, but likely not all of it, as you will be becoming a resident of the state that you move to, and many states will have a specific set of time where after that time, you have to have a driver's license from that state, or else you can't drive. And then they may have rules of what documents are required to get driver's license for the state. So, for example, if a state requires you get a license for that state after 60 days of moving there, but they require documentation that you still don't have while going through AOS to get a license, you won't be able to drive until you have that documentation. Not being able to drive while going through AOS is something I've seen a few people have trouble with, being stuck in the house not working with no way to get around can drive people crazy

There is not really much that can make any process faster. Unless you can prove you have a valid reason to expedite your case (financial hardship, health reasons, etc, and expedite reasons must affect the petitioner not beneficiary), there's not anything you can really do, other than hope that you get a faster service center, and have everything you need prepared for the steps that come after filing petition. On the bright side, Stockholm (where you will be interviewing since all applicants from Denmark, Norway, and Sweden must interview in Stockholm), has no wait time for interviews, once you get to the interview stage. Some embassies have up to a year of wait time for interviews, so having no wait time for an interview at the interview stage (other than that it's scheduled 3-4 weeks ahead of time) is a blessing


Our CR1 Journey:

 

USCIS Stage:

  • Feb 14 2019: NOA1 (NSC)
  • July 31 2019: I129f NOA1
  • Sep 19 2019: I129f NOA2 (Denied - 50 days from NOA1)
  • Sep 19 2019: I130 NOA2 (Approved - 217 days from NOA1)

 

NVC Stage:

  • Sep 27 2019: Sent to Department of State
  • Oct 31 2019: Case number received (34 days since sent)
  • Nov 1 2019: IV & AOS fees received & paid
  • Nov 14 2019: IV & AOS submitted
  • Dec 18 2019: All docs accepted, but one additional doc requested (5 weeks from submission)
  • Dec 18 2019: Requested doc submitted
  • Feb 19 2020: Documentarily Qualified (9 weeks from 2nd submission, 14 weeks from first submission)

 

Interview Stage:

  • Mar 11 2020: Interview letter received
  • Apr 1 2020: Interview date
  • Mar 17 2020: Interview cancelled due to COVID-19
  • August 3 2020: Rescheduled letter received, new appointment August 25 2020
  • August 25 2020: Visa approved at interview! (558 days from NOA1)

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Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Philippines
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3 minutes ago, LilyJ said:

Yes it is, though maybe the border patrol in Amsterdam are just very strict, they seemed to be grilling everybody when I was there

 

No border patrol in Amsterdam as it is not a preclearance station.  


YMMV

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Brazil
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25 minutes ago, Mia95 said:

k1visa: what kind or why is there trouble getting a driving license? I have an international driver's license, that I always bring with me when I visit the USA, I won't be able to use that until an American drive license. 

In many states the international driver's license is not valid for very long or not at all if you move there, so check your state DMV for details.  The biggest disadvantage of the K-1 is the 6-8 months of waiting, to get married after entering the US and to file AOS and wait for the EAD/AP, before you can get a driver's license or work.  Many choose a K-1 thinking that it is faster without considering the long wait before they can drive or work, or leave the US and return.  Some call it the "K-1 hell."  My husband went through this process last year and we chose the CR-1 because he wanted to be able to drive and work as soon as he arrived, and he also wanted to be able to fly home at any time in case there was an urgent situation.  Some refer to the K-1 post-arrival period as feeling like they are in prison for 6 months.  If you're fine with all of that, do K-1.

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