For anyone preparing to complete the process required to bring the child of their fiancé into the country on a visa, it is important to understand which visa you will need and what it takes to properly make application. The first step is to identify the visa you need.
Which Visa Do I Need?
Known as the “fiancé visa”, the K Visa is broken down into three categories:
- K1 Visa — This is for a foreign national to be allowed to live in the United States to get married; please note that this is a temporary visa.
- K2 Visa — This is to bring the child of the foreign national fiancé to the United States for the purpose of being with the parent to be married; this parent is currently being sponsored under the K1 Visa. This is also a temporary visa.
- K3 Visa — This is given to the spouse after he or she has married a citizen of the United States.
In each of these cases, application must be made by the party residing in the United States.
K2 Visa: The Term “Child” Defined
With this brief explanation of the three fiancé visas, the K2 Visa will be the visa which will meet the requirement to bring the child of the fiancé, into the United States for the parent to marry the US citizen spouse.
When you see the word “child”, it is important to understand how this is defined for the purposes of the K2 Visa. A child, in this instance, is defined as being under the age of twenty-one (21) and unmarried.
If the child is close to turning 21 and the application already made, based on the timing of the 21st birthday and the beginning of the application process, special accommodations may be made to allow the child to stay with their parent as the application continues.
However, if the child is married, they are considered to be “immediate family” and will apply under a different process once the fiancé is married and has been issued a green card.
Does This Child Qualify?
The qualifying child of the fiancé (K1 parent) must be a biological child; adopted child, or a step-child. The K1 parent will be required to provide a birth certificate or certificate of adoption to establish the relationship status of the child to the K1 parent.
The K1 parent must have legal custody of the child with the authority to move the child out of the country. It is important that the authority allowing the applying parent to move the child out of the country is legally acceptable from the perspective of both countries, as part of the K2 Visa process.
Additionally, the qualifying child must have no drug or other substance abuse problems or addictions, have a clean criminal background, and have not previously violated any US Immigration laws.
Are both the US Citizen and the fiancé the biological parents of the child? If so, the K2 is not the correct process. Please consult an immigration attorney at Johnson and Masumi for information about a Consular Report of Birth Abroad, also known as CRBA, to receive their US Citizenship, and passport.
In order to apply for the K1 Visa, financial requirements had to be met to demonstrate the ability to support his/her fiancé. As the US citizen in the process, you must be able to demonstrate an ability to support not only your fiancé, but his/her children as well.
Application for the K2 Visa requires proof of the same financial requirements as in the K1 Visa and with the possibility of some additional requirements demonstrating the ability to support the child/children of the fiancé. An immigration attorney with Johnson and Masumi will be able to review what supporting documents can demonstrate these requirements.
For this process you will want to not only meet, but exceed the financial requirements in to order to be prepared for the green card process that will follow the marriage.
What the K2 Visa Holder Should Expect
Each child’s K2 Visa allows the child to remain in the United States for up to 90 days as a K2 holder. For additional information about any exceptions, please consult with an immigration attorney at Johnson and Masumi.
- The K2 holder may not arrive in the United States prior to the arrival of the K1 parent
- The application and fees will be per child
- The K2 holder is not eligible to change their status to any other non-immigrant status
There may be a requirement for a medical exam prior to approval/entry to the United States. Very young children may be exempt, however, children over the age of 15 should expect to complete a full exam. The results of the exam will be valid for up to 6 months.
Contact An Immigration Attorney
The K2 application process involves very specific timelines and cutoffs that have no margin for error. To successfully meet the requirements and timelines, contact an immigration attorney at Johnson and Masumi for their professional guidance.