The differences between the K1 and K3 Visa

The difference between the K1 and K3 visa is the timing of marriage: for a K1 fiancé visa, the K3 marriage has not yet occurred, while for a K3 marriage visa, the marriage has already taken place.
If you are a citizen of the United States and your fiancé is not a citizen and not currently in the country, you may be wondering how you can get your partner into the United States. Thus, there are two primary options available to that will allow you to be reunited with your partner in the United States, the K-1 and K-3 visas.
Both of these visa options will allow a non-citizen entry into the United States, but they are appropriate in different situations. Whether a K-1 or K-3 visa is heavily dependent upon the facts of particular case, this article will explore the primary differences between these two visas, and discuss when each is a preferable option.
Differences between K1 & K3 Visa

K1 Fiance Visa

K3 Marriage Visa

K1 visa is for a fiance (fiancee) of a U.S. citizen (before marriage) K3 is for a spouse of a U.S. citizen (after marriage)
K1 visa doesn’t require an immigrant petition (I-130) K3 visa must have an immigrant petition filed for the beneficiary.
K1 visa holders must adjust status to obtain green cards while K3 visa holders may choose adjustment of status or consular processing after I-130 approval.
K1 is a one-entry visa K3 allows multiple entries.
K1 visa is valid for six months K3 visa is valid for two years.
K1 visa holder’s child (K2) may adjust status without I-130 K-3 visa holder’s child (K4) must have a separate I-130 filed on their behalf.

Similarities between K1 and K3 Visa:
1. K1 and K3 visas are used by American citizens to bring loved ones to the US.
2. Both holders are allowed to adjust their status to become permanent residents while in the U.S.
3. K1 fiancee and K3 Marriage visa holders are allowed to work and travel after with proper USCIS documents.
4. Both type of visa holders may receive conditional green cards first, and must apply to remove the conditions.
5. Both K1 Fiance Visa and K3 Marriage visas belong to the non-immigrant category, but visa holders are considered immigrants.
6. Both visas are filed using Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance(e).
7. K1 Fiance and K3 Marriage visa holders may bring their children as derivative beneficiaries into the U.S.
Conclusion
Both the K-1 and K-3 visas are useful ways for US citizens to get their loved ones into the country. Each type of visa is appropriate for particular situations and sets of circumstances. If you and your spouse have already been lawfully married in Thailand then a K-3 spouse visa is a good option. If you and your fiancé have not yet married, but wish to get married and stay in the United States, then a K-1 fiancé visa from Thailand is likely appropriate.
Both types of visa services in Thailand will involve a multi-step process, though the costs wait times, and procedural details will vary depending on the visa type. These issues will also be largely influenced by the details and particulars of your case.

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One Response to The differences between the K1 and K3 Visa

  1. Angela says:

    What do I need for tracking my immigration case status online? Usually, all you need is the 13-digit receipt number (see question below) from the Notice of Action form. The system will also ask for the case number, personal details, and handling office, in some cases.

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