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K-3 Visa for Marriage Explained

If you’ve found your perfect match from another country and you want to take him or her with you to the United States to start a new life together, then you might think of getting a K3 marriage visa.

The K3 marriage visa falls under a non-immigrant visa category that allows spouses of U.S. citizens to enter the United States until they can lawfully adjust their status into a permanent residence status.

There are many benefits of getting a K3 visa. First, it takes shorter waiting periods for everything to be processed as opposed to marriage-based immigration visas. Also, your spouse can engage in employment by applying for a work permit, and your children can enter the United States through the K4 visa, given that they are listed in the visa petition.

To be eligible to get a K3 visa, one has to be legally wed or married to a U.S. citizen. The U.S. citizen spouse should file a family based immigration petition (I-130) on the non-citizen spouse’s behalf. Another requirement is if the non-citizen spouse wishes to enter the U.S. while waiting for his/her green card petition approval and the succeeding lawful change in status to permanent resident.

On behalf of your non-U.S. citizen spouse, you should file Form I-130 with the USCIS service center that has authority over your non-citizen spouse’s place of residence. Afterward, you will get Form I-797, stating that the Form I-130 was received by the USCIS. A copy of this form should be sent together with a USCIS Form I-129F to the USCIS in Chicago, Illinois for adjudication. This is then forwarded to the appropriate American Consulate so your spouse can apply for a K3 visa.