Home  K-3 Visa Application  |  Google+  Facebook  Twitter

The Benefits and Limitations of K-3 visa, 
and Children Who Are about to Reach 21 Years Old

1. The Benefits of K-3 Visa

The benefits of a K-3 visa include:

a) Backlogs on adjudicating visa petitions filed by United States citizens for their immediate relatives can exceed a year and half at some of the USCIS Service Centers, and immigrant visa issuance by a consulate can routinely take another six months. The K-3 visa, intended to improve the speed with which a family can be united in the United States, can substantially shorten that lengthy waiting period for U.S. Citizen spouses to enter the U.S.

b) Once admitted to the United States, the spouse issued K-3 visa will be eligible to adjust status to permanent residency. This is a significant benefit because of enhanced procedural safeguards available to persons who adjust to permanent resident status, in contrast to persons who must apply for immigrant visas abroad.

c) Additionally, upon entry, the K-3 visa holder will be eligible to work in the United States. If the United States citizen petitioner is low-income and unable to meet the minimal income level necessary to submit the I-864 Affidavit of Support form that is required before a non-citizen can be approved for residency, then the K visa holder's ability to work is a great advantage, because when calculating income, the United States petitioner can include the non-citizen beneficiary's income if the petitioner and the beneficiary have lived together for six months.

2. The Limitations of K-3 Visa

The USCIS only admits K-3 spouses for a two-year period. The USCIS may grant extensions of K-3 visas in two-year increments if the marriage-based I-130 visa petition, the adjustment of status application, or the immigrant visa petition is still awaiting adjudication.

Also, the law does not allow non-immigrant aliens to change to "K-3/K-4" status while they are in the U.S. It is solely available to those outside the U.S. for the purpose of family reunification with the U.S. citizens. Further more, K-3/K-4 visa holders may not change to any other non-immigrant status while they are in the U.S. If a person is temporarily barred from entering into the U.S. for previous violation of U.S. immigration law, she or he cannot use K-3 visa to enter into the U.S.

3. The Termination of K-3 Status

There is a 2-year limit for the K-3/K-4 status. Also, K-3/K-4 nonimmigrant status will be terminated 30 days after the denial of one of the following:

a) The USCIS denies the I-130 visa petition filed by the United States citizen petitioner on the K-3 visa holder's behalf;

b) The USCIS denies an Adjustment of Status Application (Form I-485) filed by the K visa holder; or

c) If for some reason, the K-3 visa holder decides to apply for an immigrant visa at the appropriate United States consulate abroad, the consulate denies the immigrant visa application;

d) Termination also will automatically occur 30 days after the divorce of the K-3 spouse from the United States citizen petitioner.

4. Children Who Are about to Reach 21 Years Old

As an alien spouse, if you have children who intend to immigrate with you to the United States, if any of your children will turn 21 within 60 days, please notify the U. S. embassy or consulate immediately. If visa will be available in your category prior to your son or daughter's birthday, your case will receive expedited processing in order to ensure that your son or daughter will be able to immigrate with you.

Failure to notify the U. S. embassy or consulate that you have a child who will turn 21 could result in that child being above the legal age at the time your visa is issued. In that event, you will be required to file a separate petition for your child after you immigrate, and your son or daughter will face a waiting period before he or she will be eligible for visa processing.

5. Travel Outside of the U.S. while in K status

K-3 and K-4 visa holders may travel outside of the U.S. and return using their nonimmigrant K-3/K-4 visa for a short trip, if the visa is still valid, even if they have filed for adjustment of status in the U.S. prior to their departure.

On the contrary, the K-1 and K-2 holders may enter the U.S. only one time with their K-1/K-2 visas. If they leave the U.S. before the marriage, they need to apply for a new visa to come back. After they file the adjustment of status application, they are required to obtain an Advance Parole before the trip abroad, in order to avoid abandonment of the adjustment application.

6. How Long Does It Take to Get My U.S. Citizenship

Most U.S. Permanent Residents have to wait 5 years after receiving Green Card to qualify for U.S. Citizenship. However, the immigration law gives a break to spouses of U.S. Citizens.

If you are a U.S. permanent or conditional resident, you cannot apply for U.S. citizenship until you have lived in U.S. as a lawful permanent resident for at least five years. That means exactly five years to the day. You can check your U.S. permanent resident card for the exact date on which you became a permanent resident.

If you start out as a conditional resident rather than a permanent resident, because you got your residence through your marriage to a U.S. citizen, your two years as a conditional resident count as permanent residence.

If you have been married for at least 3 years, and your spouse has been a U.S. Citizen for at least 3 years, you are eligible for citizenship 3 years after you become U.S. Permanent Resident. Actually, you are allowed to apply for naturalization 3 months before the end of your 3 year residence.

The U.S. citizenship application must be submitted by mail, using USCIS Form N-400. USCIS will take a long time to process the N-400, to arrange for you to be fingerprinted, and to call you in for the interview at which it actually reviews your application, tests you on your knowledge of English and U.S. government, and makes a decision on whether to approve or deny you. USCIS may take at least 90 days to call you in for your interview.





More Articles for K-3 Visa Application of U.S. Citizen's Spouse
K-3 Visa for Spouse of a United States Citizen
Requirements of Applying for a K-3 Visa
Procedure at the National Visa Center to Process the K-3 Cases
Frequently Asked Questions of K-3 Visa
Our Help Desk's Answers for Questions of K-3 Visa Application
Complete Do-It-Yourself Package of K-3 Visa Application
K-3 Visa Application for U.S. Citizen's Spouse
Home Page


For All Your Immigration and Green Card Application Needs
 © Family Green Card Application Service, www.greencardfamily.com