K Visas for Same Sex Spouses

Recently, K visas have become available to members of same-sex couples, which is an exciting and progressive development in the U.S. immigration field. In this page, one of our DC K Visa lawyers provides a general overview of the immigration process for same-sex spouses and Fiancé(e)s, and elaborates on what must be done in order to apply for these special visas.

It’s important, however, to keep in mind that every visa process is as unique as the individual applying for that visa, and an immigration attorney can help to make sure that the application process is approached thoroughly and with an experienced touch. Call our law offices today to speak to a lawyer who can help.

Exciting Changes for Same-Sex Couples

K visas are also now accessible to same-sex spouses of U.S. citizens, and to fiancées of U.S. Citizens. We’ve had a large number of these types of cases since DOMA was struck down, and it’s exciting because many people have been waiting for a route towards legalization for their partner for decades.  When our immigration attorneys receive calls about this, we can often hear the relief and joy in people’s voices when they realize that they can finally be reunited in the U.S. with a foreign partner, or that their spouse in the U.S. will be able to come out of the shadows of being undocumented.

K Visa Application Process

K visas are temporary visas that are available to spouses and fiancées of U.S. citizens – not green card holders – who are currently abroad and want to enter the U.S. to apply for their green cards here.  Right now, there’s not much of a reason to use the K visa for a spouse, because if you’re already married you can apply for your spouse’s green card via USCIS form I-130 from abroad, and they can enter the U.S. as a lawful permanent resident. The only time the K visa can be really helpful is if the USCIS adjudication time for the I-130 application is exceedingly long and the adjudication time for the K visa (filed via USCIS form I-129) is shorter. In these cases, it might provide for a quicker familial reunification if you’re able to get the I-129 approved more quickly than the I-130. Then, your spouse will enter on the K visa, which is temporary, and apply for their green card through a process called “adjustment of status” once present in the U.S.

Same Sex Fiancée Immigration

On the other hand, if you’re not planning on marrying your fiancée prior to entering, you can apply for the K visa as a fiancée instead of a spouse. The process for fiancées is initiated via form I-129 as well, and it is filed domestically with USCIS. Once USCIS approves it, the case will be forwarded to the National Visa Center and then on to the consulate or embassy abroad. At that point, the foreign fiancée will be scheduled for an interview and will then enter the U.S. They’ll be required to marry the fiancée within 90 days of entering. Once the marriage is finalized, the I-130 and adjustment of status application will be filed, and the spouse will be scheduled for an interview here in the U.S. for the green card.