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    FAQ: How to file for Marriage Visas
    Why are people so fearful and nervous about getting a marriage visa?
Basically because people do not take care to find out what are the requirements to receive a visa after getting married. They start the whole process after getting married. In fact they should make enquiries before getting married because there are certain requirements to show to the Consulates officers prior to your marriage. At the time of your marriage and subsequent to that, if they take a little trouble of finding out all these things then I don't think there will be any difficulty in receiving visas.

What are the differences between all these visas the K1, K2, K3 and K4?
When you marry a US citizen you fall under the category of immediate relative and then there is no quota restriction. You can immediately upon your marriage travel to US by obtaining an immigrant visa. But immediately does not mean immediately. It takes some time to process your petitions. Upon the marriage if the marriage is performed in India and if the spouse can stay here for 2 months then there is a possibility of filing the petition in New Delhi and in that event the petition is processed within about 3-4 months.

If the spouse cannot stay in New Delhi for two months together then the spouse can file petition in US and then it takes about a year and a half. Recently a new change has been made in the US immigration laws that even after marriage a US citizen spouse can also sponsor his Indian spouse for a K3 fiance visa and in that event he/she would be able to go to US within about 8-10 months and after the petition is filed it is processed then the National Visa centres sends an affidavit of support to be signed by the US spouse. The US spouse has to show that he is able to maintain his spouse over 125% levels above the poverty level.

Isn't the limit of 125% unrealistic for certain people and certain community who may not be able to earn that much?
It is not really that big an amount because normally I think if somebody earns about USD2000-3000 a month in the US, he would be able to support his spouse over 125% above the poverty level but then these are the rules and the US government doesn't want that you should invite somebody and that person should become a burden upon the US government

Is it true that the INS (the Immigration and Naturalisation service in US frowns upon the fiance visas. Why is it so difficult to get a depended visa?
The experience and the record shows that 30% of the marriages, which has been, entered into with US citizens are fraud marriages. They are entered only with a view to travel to USA and be there and therefore they look upon these visas with very sceptical eyes. To be eligible to receive a visa based upon your marriage the marriage should be valid in the country where it is performed, the marriage should be valid in the state of USA where you are going to go and stay there.

Therefore sometimes say for example Muslim marriages they are allowed to have more than one wife in India but in US they are not allowed so they will not be allowed if you are married second time and your first wife is alive and your marriage is subsisting, that person will not get the visa for the second wife. In India the Muslims can marry their first cousins, in USA in some states it is not allowed. Now in these cases even if the marriages are valid here in India the US government will not grant you visa because it is not valid in their country. So marriage should be valid at both the places and the other formalities should be completed.

What are the important documents one would need?
It is important to keep a record of all documents and every communications with the visa authorities. Make sure you fulfil the requirements to prove that you are financially secure. Remember to keep photographs, letters or emails exchanged between your spouse and you. Opening a joint account or making your spouse your bank account nominee helps in establishing the relationship.

Know everything about your spouse, citizenship details, family members, work place, and friends. If this is your spouse second marriage then gather proofs, photographs, marriage certificate, divorce papers or death certificate as the case may be. Take an interpreter along for the interview if you don't understand English. It is better to admit ignorance than provide wrong information. You could hire an attorney to accompany you.

What should you keep in mind and the most common mistakes to avoid?
First of all before getting married you must know the complete background of the person with whom you are getting married. If the person says that he is a citizen then you must try to find out whether the citizenship is by birth or by naturalisation and has received the certificate.

If the person is holding a green card you must try to see when the green card was obtained, on what basis it was obtained because sometimes the green card is obtained on the basis of marriage and then the divorce takes place and then that person cannot sponsor somebody for the next two years. So all these things should be looked into and kept in mind, the documents should be seen. Many times somebody may make a false claim that I am a US citizen but the person may not be a US citizen and after marriage if it is found then the person is in difficulties.

At the time of marriage you must know that when you are going to apply for a visa you will have to show the proof of the marriage so the marriage should be validly performed and if there is a past history of marriage and if that marriage has landed to a divorce or the death of the party then you must have necessary cords of divorce or the death certificate. When you perform the marriage according to the religious rites all the rites and ceremony should be performed and you must take adequate photographs of that and thereafter there should be some proof that they have lived together as husband and wives.

So all these things should be checked into and then there wont be any difficulty. Take proper care and caution before you file your petition. So that your petition is not likely to be rejected on some small flimsy grounds such as taking proper photographs, spelling your names properly, filing it with a proper service centre, submitting all the required documents and tendering the exact fee which is required. If all these precautions are taken then there wont be any rejections and your petition will be processed quickly.

The first is what type of paper work does the fiance or spouse receives from the Consulate?
The procedure is that after marriage the US citizen or the US green card holder spouse files a petition which is known as form I130 and after that is approved the National visa center sends an affidavit of support which the US spouse has to make and after that is approved the National Visa center sends packet 3 forms to the Indian spouse. Indian spouse has to fill up those things and submit it to the consulate here.

The consulate thereafter sends packet 4 and gives an appointment for medical check up and the interview, at the interview the spouse has to show the relationship of marriage that it is a bonafide genuine marriage performed legally and that the affidavit of support has been filed. If the consulate officer feels okay he will issue the visa upon receipt of the immigrant visa the Indian spouse has to travel to US within the next 6 months and once there the Indian spouse will be granted a conditional 2 years green card before the expiry of the two years.

After 21 months and before 24 months the Indian spouse and the US spouse they have to file joint petition for removing the condition on green card and if they are found to be still married and living as husband and wife the green card will be made permanent.

What vaccinations are required and is it better to have them before the interview?
All sorts of vaccinations are required, you will have to undergo a medical test and at that time you will have to show all these things.

Is it necessary to be a US citizen to file a petition for a K3 visa for a spouse or is it enough to be a green card holder?
You have to be a citizen then only you can file K3 visa

I am employed as a staff nurse and am on work permit. I got married last year and my husband applied for a dependent visa but was refused on the grounds that I was not present in India on the date mentioned in the marriage certificate. However my passport does indeed have stamps of the day I reached and left India. My husband appealed against the decision in April but we have not heard anything yet from asylum and appeals tribunal. What should I do next?
She has to wait because this is the reason why people who are applying for visas particularly based upon the relationship of marriage should be very very careful initially because as I have said the majority of the marriages are entered into with a view to just gain an entry into the USA and therefore the consular officer always suspects that there is a fraud and if they suspect something then unless they are fully satisfied they will not issue the visa. Now in such cases they put the case under the administrative process and which they look into at their own leisure. It may take 6 months, 1 year or 2 years also.

If the normal processing time of visa is 40-90 days why does the clearance always exceed the time frame. What about clearance for people from developed world.?
As the number of application goes on increasing day by day the delay goes on increasing that is the main reason. Indian population in USA during the last 10 years have increased two fold so naturally the applications have also increased two fold and therefore the delay occurs

I want to know if I can bring my fiance Saumiya over on a tourist visa instead of sticking to a K1 visa. What are the issues on this?
First of all when you apply for a tourist visa you have to show a non-immigrant intention of travelling to USA and strong family and financial ties in your home country. If you are planning to marry someone in USA or your fiance is in USA then how could you say that you have no intention of permanently residing in USA, in that event your tourist visa may be denied. Normally when a young girl or a young boy who is a bachelor or a spinster applies for a US tourist visa they are not being issued the same. So if Sanjay is thinking of asking his fiance to come on a tourist visa perhaps he may not be granted. Even if he is lucky in getting a tourist visa then no useful purpose will be served because after getting married there she will have to come back, she cannot on a tourist visa stay for more than 6 months and during that time it may not be possible to have a petition for an immigrant visa green card process. So she will have to come back and wait. So it is better that she travels on a fiance visa, gets married there and then stay there permanently.

And once she is there on a proper visa, on a fiance visa then can she work if she is permitted to?
After getting married she has to apply for the adjustment of her status from fiance to get a permanent residence and during that time when the petition is processed she is allowed to work.

What about certain cases where the process is very long, can it be started in India and then completed once the person is in US?
Yes it can be. But it is not necessary that every time you marry a US green card holder or a citizen that you must apply for a immigrant visa based upon your relationship. You may qualify for so many other things, you may qualify for a student visa, you may qualify for H1 or work visa, you may qualify for an intra company transfer L1 visa, if you are from a media or a press you may qualify for a I visa. So one should try to explore whether other visas are available and then one can go on that visa and stay there permanently.

If somebody goes on one of these other visa F1, H1 or L1 and then decides to get married there then wont it again pose a problem?
No, it will not. One can stay on that visa after married one can apply for a green card permanent residence and change of status

But it is different from the tourist visa?
Yes. Because on a tourist visa you can maximum stay is 6 months, while on a student visa you can stay there till you are a student which may be 5-6 years, on a H1 visa you can stay there for 6 years, on a L1 visa you can stay there for 7years

I want as much information possible for my daughter who wants to marry a green card holder in the US. I want to know what are the various grounds of inaccessibility, which could lead to her visa being denied. Is there a big difference in procedure between marrying a citizen and a green card holder?
If you marry a citizen then you will be able to travel to US shortly within say about a year, if you marry a green card holder you will not fall under the immediate relative, you will under the family preference 2A category for which there can be a delay of 5 years as of today. Besides this whether you marry a citizen or a green card holder when you apply for the interview you will have to show that you are not hit by any of the ground of inadmissibility. There are several grounds of inadmissibility they are based on your health related, financial, in past you may be guilty of doing some fraud or misrepresentation as regards the visa is concerned, the security grounds are there. So all those things you will have to clear

I migrated to US through marriage in 1985; I was married till two years ago. My husband and I divorced on grounds of substantial incompatibility and now want to remarry so will this affect my visa status?
No it will have no impact because now that person is having a permanent residence, her conditional residence has been removed and she or he can marry.

But isn't there a time period. I believe that there is about 5 years or so to wait till you get married again?
No, You can marry even immediately provided you show that your earlier marriage the husband or wife has died or it has terminated into divorce for no fault of yours but it was a natural thing.

I am hoping to join my fiance in Birmingham. How can I prepare for the interview with the visa officer. What are the things to keep in mind, the supporting documents etc?
First of all the officer will ask her as to how did you meet this person, how did you get introduced, whether there was any engagement ceremony and to know whether the marriage is bonafide, the lifestyle of the husband, what is he doing and where is he working, how is his house, what are his habits and the proof of the marriage.And his wife or husband would know about each other. The officer would like to know whether you know your husband well or not

Source: South Asia World