US Immigration law allows two methods for US citizens to bring future spouses and current spouses to the United States: the K-1 Fiance(e) Visa and the K-3 Immigrant Visa. The K-1 Visa. generally takes less time to process than the K-3 Visa. The K-3 Visa, however, is a proven path toward lawful permanent residency for your spouse.


K-1 Visa

The U.S Citizen files an I-129F petition with the appropriate Service Center along with the supporting documents. Once the petition has been approved by the USCIS, the alien Fiancee applies for a K-3 visa at the appropriate Consulate in his/her home country.

Marriage must occur within 90 days after entry into the U.S. Minor children of fiances are eligible for K-2 visas.

K-3 Visa

The US citizen spouse files an I-129F petition with the USCIS along with certain evidence including proof that an I-130 has been filed.


Please contact USCIS or the appropriate foreign service post for details about what specific documents you will need to file an immigrant petition for a new spouse. For more information, read our section on Family-Based Immigration.


V-1 and V-2  visas are for spouses and children of Green Card holders and V-3 visas are for dependent children of the spouses. V visas are available if the green card holder filed an I-130 for the spouse or child(ren) prior to December 21, 2000 and if the I-130 is pending for 3 years or more or if the petition has been approved but 3 or more years have passed and a visa number is not available or a visa number is available but the adjustment application is pending.