The K3 visa
The K3 visa
The K3 visa was once a lifesaver for US spousal visa applicants. However, it’s time is past, it is now pretty much obsolete. I will explain.
About 15 years ago, to process a spousal visa took 18-24 months, while to process a fiancé visa took only 3-4 months. Of course, many people complained about this. INS, as it was called then, came up with a third NON immigrant visa, the K3, to enable spousal visa applicants to enter the USA while their immigrant spousal visa (I-130) was still being processed at the service center. This new visa was very similar to the K1 fiancé visa, in fact it used the same form, the I-129F petition for alien fiancé. The way it was designed to work is the petitioner filed a petition for alien relative (spousal I-130) and waited for NOA1, then filed form I-129F. The I-129F was approved in short order and sent to NVC, and onward to the embassy while the original I-130 was still waiting approval at the service center. The K3 visa cut the waiting time for the applicant to enter the US down from 18-24 months to a mere 7 months. Spousal visa applicants and petitioners were ecstatic, and it immediately became a very popular visa.
However, now, the processing time of I-130 petitions at the service center is only 3-6 months. So what happens now is the I-129F (K3) arrives at the NVC just a few weeks ahead of the I-130 spousal petition. If both applications are at NVC at the same time, NVC CANCELS the K3, and proceeds with the I-130 spousal petition. In the event the K3 is not canceled, and is continued to be processed, it shaves only 3-8 weeks from the processing time of the I-130.
Keep in mind that once an applicant enters the US on a K3, they must then adjust status, to the tune of $1070. Whereas, if they had waited just a few weeks more, they could have entered on the I-130 as an immigrant, and had their green card and SS card already done, no adjustment of status needed.
Add it all up, and one can see why the K3 is a visa of the past. Many immigration attorneys are still pushing the K3 visa. You may ask why, the reason of course is money, they get paid much more to process an additional visa, adjust status, etc…
Is it worth it to you? Only you can answer that.
For more K3 information, click here.
Thanks for reading,
Larry and Rony
Last Updated (Thursday, 20 February 2014 08:07)