The K1 Visa Requirements: A Complete & Comprehensive List

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The K1 visa, or the fiancé(e) visa, allows a United States citizen’s fiancé(e) to enter the United States. A K1 visa holder must marry their partner within 90 days of entering the country. They may then apply for a marriage-based green card after getting married. 

  1. K1 Visa Requirements
  2. Form I-129F: Petition for Alien Fiancé(e)
  3. Form DS-160: Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application
  4. Form I-134: Affidavit of Support
  5. The K1 Visa Interview

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If you are eligible, it is important that you understand the K1 visa requirements. There are many steps in the process, and if you do not meet all of the requirements, or submit incomplete information, your application can be denied causing greater delays and complications in your journey to your partner

This blog post will provide a comprehensive list of the K1 visa requirements. Keep in mind that these requirements, and your eligibility, may change over time.

Let’s dive in!

K1 Visa Requirements At a Glance

While every couple is unique and every relationship is different, for the most part, you will need the following documents:

  • Proof of citizenship for the U.S. citizen fiancé(e)
  • Copy of the sponsored foreign-national fiancé(e)’s valid, unexpired passport
  • Evidence of any prior marriages that have been terminated, if applicable
  • Proof of meeting in person within the 2 years before applying
  • Evidence of any legal name changes, where applicable
  • Sworn statements from both partners indicating your intent to marry within 90 days of the sponsored fiancé(e) arriving in the United States
  • Evidence for the IMBRA waiver (if applicable; it’s very rarely applicable)
  • One passport-style photo for each fiancé(e)
  • Two passport-style photos for the sponsored fiancé(e) (these will be taken at different times; more on that below)
  • Birth certificate for the sponsored fiancé(e)
  • Valid, unexpired passport for sponsored fiancé(e)
  • Police clearance obtained from all countries where the sponsored fiancé(e) has lived for more than 6 months, including their country of residence
  • Form I-134 (Affidavit of Support), provided by U.S. citizen fiancé(e)
  • Sealed medical exam issued by a State Department authorized physician abroad in the sponsored fiancé(e)’s country of residence
  • Most recent tax return of the U.S. citizen fiancé(e)

Form I-129F: Petition for Alien Fiancé(e)

The U.S. Citizen fiancé(e) (sponsor) will file Form I-129F with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to start the K1 visa process. The sponsor and their fiancé(e) will need to submit the following documents with their I-129F Petition.

K1 Visa Requirements for Form I-129F:

U.S. Citizen Sponsor

  • Proof of U.S. Citizenship
    • Copy of birth certificate
    • Copy of naturalization or citizenship certificate
    • Copy of Consular Report of Birth Abroad
    • Copy of unexpired U.S. passport
    • A statement issued by consular officer attesting to your citizenship
  • Evidence for IMBRA waiver (if necessary)
    • Death certificate
    • Police reports
    • News articles
    • Medical reports from a licensed medical professional
    • Reference this USCIS memo for more information

Both Partners

  • Proof that previous marriages have ended (if any fiancé(e) has been previously married)
    • Death certificate(s) of any previous partner(s)
    • Divorce decree
    • Annulment order
  • One-color, passport-style photo
    • Must be taken within 30 days of filing Form I-129F
  • Proof of legal name change (if any fiancé(e) has changed their name)
    • Certified copy of court order
  • Signed statements (and any applicable evidence) that you will marry within 90 days of the sponsored fiancé(e)’s arrival in the United States
    • Wedding invitations
    • Receipts for wedding-related purchases (such as the venue)
  • Evidence that you’ve both met in person at least one time within the two years prior to filing Form I-129F
    • Flight itineraries
    • Hotel itineraries
    • Correspondence
    • Dated Photos (for example, of the couple holding a current newspaper)
  • Proof that your relationship is real and genuine
    • Photos
    • Signed statements submitted by friends and family
    • Itineraries from trips taken together
    • Correspondence/communication records

Sponsored Fiancé(e)

Remember, if you submit an incomplete application, USCIS may reject it. And if you don’t provide the required evidence, USCIS may issue a Request For Evidence (RFE), which will delay your application by several months, so take your time to double and triple-check the list!

Only copies of documents should be submitted with the I-129F Petition packet. The sponsored fiancé(e) will need the originals available for the interview at the Consulate. If original documents are not accessible for some reason, you might be able to submit a statement from the issuing civil authority stating they are inaccessible.

If that is the case, you must submit secondary documentation such as school records, U.S. census records, baptismal certificates, affidavits, and any other evidence supporting your case. 

To learn more, see pages 10 – 12 of the USCIS instructions for Form I-129F.

Our Love Visa is here to support you on your K1 visa journey from beginning to end. Start using our free planning tools here!

When your I-129F is approved, you’ll be one step closer to reuniting with your love!

Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application (DS-160)

After Form I-129F has been approved, the sponsored fiancé(e) must fill out Form DS-160. Both fiancé(e)s must gather several required documents to complete this form.

We’ve broken it up into two categories: one for the sponsored fiancé(e) and one for the US citizen sponsor.

K1 Visa Requirements for Form DS-160:

Sponsored Fiancé(e)

  • Two passport-style photos
  • Birth certificate
  • Valid, unexpired passport
  • Police clearance was obtained from all countries where the sponsored fiancé(e) lived for more than six months since the age of 16
  • Sealed medical exam form (obtained through a State Department authorized physician abroad)
  • ​​Divorce or death certificate(s) of any previous spouse(s)

U.S. Citizen Fiancé(e)

  • Affidavit of support, Form I-134 (more details below)
  • Most recent tax return
  • Proof of relationship (copy of the approved I-129F package originally filed with USCIS and any additional evidence you can provide to the Consulate officer during the interview)
  • ​​Divorce or death certificate(s) of any previous spouse(s)

The consular officer will decide if the sponsored fiancé’s(e) is approvable for a K-1 visa based on responses to the DS-160 and information gathered during the interview. In the last section, we’ll examine which documents you must bring to the interview.

Not sure if you’re eligible for a K1 visa? Check your eligibility here!

Form I-134: Affidavit of Support

Let’s look at the Affidavit of Support in more detail.

One of the K1 visa requirements is that the U.S. citizen sponsor submit an Affidavit of Support. This form states that they will be able to financially support their fiancé(e) during their stay in the United States.

The U.S. citizen sponsor must submit the documents below when filing Form I-134 with USCIS.

K1 Visa Requirements for Form I-134:

  • Proof of Bank Account
    • A bank official’s signed statement showing the date you opened the account, the amount of money you’ve put in over the last year, and your present balance
  • Proof of Employment
    • A signed statement on company letterhead that states your salary, the dates of your employment, the nature of your position, and whether you are a permanent or temporary employee
  • Proof of Federal Taxes
    • A copy of your most recent federal tax return. If you are self-employed, a report of commercial rating concern
  • Proof of Bonds (if applicable)
    • List of bonds with their denominations and serial numbers, as well as owners’ names

In order to submit this form, the petitioner must be a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the United States and meet, at minimum,100% of the income level for your family size as determined by the Federal Poverty Guidelines.

With so many documents to keep track of, you want to stay organized. Our Love Visa’s planning tools can help!

K-1 Visa Interview

When Form DS-160 is approved, the sponsored partner will schedule an interview at their local embassy or consulate. Let’s break down what’s needed at the interview appointment.

K-1 Visa Requirements for the Interview:

  • DS-160 confirmation page
  • Birth certificate
  • Police certificates from each country where the sponsored fiancé(e) has lived for more than six months, including the current country of residence
  • Evidence of financial support (Affidavit of Support, Form I-134)
  • Proof of relationship (copy of the approved I-129F package originally filed with USCIS and any new evidence, if applicable)
  • Fee payment
  • Passport that will remain valid for at least 6 months after arriving in the United States
  • ​​Divorce or death certificate(s) of any previous spouse(s) – for both fiancé(e)s
  • Sealed medical exam
  • Two 2×2 photos

You and your partner will already have collected many of these documents for previous stages of the process. That’s why keeping your documents and evidence organized throughout the K1 visa process is so important.

Need help getting organized? Utilize Our Love Visa’s free planning tools to make sure you meet all of the K1 Visa requirements. Get started today!

Simple, fast, and reliable K1 and Marriage visa filing

Our Love Visa makes your K1 Fiancé(e) and marriage immigration process easy, fast, and worry-free, guaranteed. We provide you with complementary tools and resources free that help you plan your future in the United States together. Learn about how OLV is helping couples through their K1 fiancé and marriage visa journey

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