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|Spouse of a U.S. Citizen (K3 Visa)
A spouse of a U.S. citizen may enter the United States in K3 status while an I130 Immigrant Visa Petition filed on his or her behalf is pending. Once the I130 petition is approved, the spouse may apply for adjustment of status (Form I-485) to lawful permanent resident. If the adjustment of status application is approved, he or she will have conditional resident status, which will require him or her to petition to remove the conditions within 90 days of the two year anniversary of receiving conditional resident status.
A K3 nonimmigrant alien is authorized to remain in the U.S. for the period specified on the Form I94 at the time of entry. The law permits a two year admission period, but should the K3 nonimmigrant require more time, he or she may apply for an extension in two year increments. Once the spouse is admitted to the U.S., he or she may obtain work authorization.
To obtain a K3 visa, the U.S. citizen must file a Form I130 petition with the USCIS Service Center with jurisdiction over your state of residence. The I130 petition is an immigrant visa petition, which paves the way for the beneficiary spouse to apply for a green card. After the I130 petition is filed, the USCIS Service Center issues a receipt notice. The USCIS has recently changed filing procedures and now require that the I129F petition requesting K3 status be filed at the USCIS Service Center where the I130 petition is pending. he U.S. citizen then submits a copy of that notice with other supporting documentation of the marriage, and a Form I129F with the USCIS National Benefits Center (formerly Missouri Service Center). Once the I129F is approved, the U.S. citizen's spouse may apply for a K3 visa at his or her consulate post abroad.
This information is a broad overview of the K3 visa, and it is recommended that you contact an attorney to discuss your particular case. If you have any questions or would like to schedule a consultation, please contact us.
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