K3 Visa and Family Based Green Cards
There are two main categories that either U.S. Citizens or Legal Permanent Residents can petition for relatives to immigrate to the United States: immediate relatives and family preference visas.
Immediate Relative Immigration:
There is an unlimited number of visas for immediate relatives of U.S. Citizens, including:
Spouses (IR-1 Visa)
Unmarried children under the age of 21
Parents of U.S. Citizens who are over the age of 21
Family Preference Immigration:
There is a limited number of family-based preference immigration visas allowed on an annual basis. The wait time depends on the relationship with the U.S. Citizen or legal permanent resident, the home country, and the number of petitions that have already been filed in the preference category. The family preference categories are:
First preference (F1): U.S. Citizen’s unmarried adult children
Second preference (F2A and B2B): Legal permanent resident’s spouses and minor children and unmarried adult children
Third preference (F3): U.S. Citizen’s married children
Fourth preference (F4): Siblings of U.S. Citizens over the age of 21
There are two main options for petitioning:
The first of two options is the fiancee visa. If you meet someone in a foreign country and then want to consider a permanent relationship, the easiest thing to do is to file for a fiancee visa. This visa allows the person to enter the U.S. for a 90-day period. You can live together, and if you decide to spend the rest of your lives together, get married within the 90-day period. The foreign person can remain in the United States and apply for the marriage Green Card while in the United States, and then live here permanently. After three years and you remain married, the person can apply for U.S. Citizenship.
GREEN CARD THROUGH MARRIAGE
The second option, is that if you meet someone in a foreign country and you know that you would like to marry that person, you can go to their country, or any country other than the United States, and if it is a legally recognized marriage, you can exchange vows and then file for the marriage Green Card while you, the US citizen, are in the United States. You cannot bring the person back with you.
EXPANSION ON THE GREEN CARD THROUGH MARRIAGE
1. Let’s say you have a childhood sweetheart and that person lives in a foreign country. You can go there and marry him or her, as stated above, but the paperwork will take 9-12 months to process before the person can return to the United States.
2. The second situation is where the foreign person is on vacation in the United States and meets you. The two of you decide that you will spend the rest of your lives together and get married. In this case, as the foreign person did not enter with the intent of remaining, he or she can stay here while the paperwork is being processed. The key is to file the paperwork before the person’s legal status expires.
WHAT IS THE PROCEDURE LIKE?
1. Once the case is filed, in about 4 months the foreign person will receive a work permit and social security card. This allows the person to work wherever they like, as well as open a bank account, obtain a driver’s license, and so on.
2. The person at the same time as the EAD (=work authorization) will receive an “Advance Parole”. This document allows the person to travel and return. (One can always leave the US, it’s returning that’s the hard part). NOTE: People who file their cases without a lawyer often call us because they leave, thinking the Advance Parole will let them back in. Sadly, if they are out of status, they will be trapped. They will now have to wait outside the country for embassy processing, which can easily take 12 months, depending on the country. Even worse, if the person was out of status when they left for 6 months, there will be a 3-year bar imposed, and if they were out of status for a year or more, a 10-year bar will be imposed.
We help families from around the world so they can reunit in the United States and create their new futures. We handle most family-based immigration matters including immediate relative petitions, relative visas, fiance(e) visas and marriage visas. Contact us for consultation on K3 visa and other family-based green card applications: (877) 223-4684 From outside the US: (619) 677-5727 From Canada: (877) 223-4684. All numbers go to the same line. From Italy: 0689385848, and From England: 2033710984