After I’ve met my husband to an online dating site and met in person, it takes more than 3 years before he applied K1 fiancé(e) visa for me for some reason. But he visited me every year and our daughter, that set up is alright for me because I have a job during that time and still enjoying the life with my family and friends in the Philippines and with our daughter. I actually have no idea what is K1 visa all about, I thought applying US visa has no different category, I didn’t do any research about it until after 3 years my husband decided to apply K1 visa for me and CRBA for our daughter, I didn’t know that he already know about K1 and CRBA, he said I did research about it since I’ve met you but just can’t do applying it for you and Zoey CRBA because I need to save and prepared your two coming to the US, he knows how we enjoyed our life to the Philippines and he is afraid if we feel homesick and don’t like the life in the US we just suddenly decided to go back to my country. To make a story short he paid visa services just to process my K1 visa and Zoey CRBA for less stress. We both working and need visa service help to process all the stuff we need for this matter.
Now, let me tell you the step by step of my K1 Visa Journey because I want you to get some idea from our experience and I hope my story can help and guide you the step by step to do if you decide to petition your fiance sooner.
Note: Please bear in mind that this is just based on my K1 visa journey experienced.
Preparing I-129F Packet
If you want to get a fiancé(e) visa for your foreign fianceé the first thing you need to do is file I-129F Petition with USCIS. My husband didn’t tell me that he is going to file a petition for me and CRBA for Zoey that time, I just knew it when he asked some personal information about me because he needs it to fill in the forms of I-129F and let the visa services do the double check to all the forms after he finishes it, but anyway, the visa services he paid is from the Philippines so the cycle is he will send the documents to them and when visa service checked it and no more error they will send it to me to sign all the forms and add more documents in my part. And after I get the packet and complete all the documents and sign it’s my time to send it back to my husband in the US, now it’s his turn to sign all forms and send it to USCIS. I know you felt confused to me lol! It’s because our documents go back and forth to the US but anyway, here is the complete documents list inside our I-129F packet.
I-129F Packet Complete Documents List
Money Order or Check of $340 ( that was 2016, price)
Form G-1145 E-Notification (this is optional, but my husband want to receive notification from USCIS)
Form G- 325A (My husband Biographic Information) with 2 pcs of 2×2 passport pictures with a print full name at the back using a black ink pen.
Photocopy of Passport ID page
Photocopy of Birth Certificate
Letter of intent to marry
Form G-325A (My Biographic Information) with 2 pcs of 2×2 passport pictures with a print full name at the back using a black ink pen.
Photocopy of Birth Certificate
Letter of intent to marry
Proof of having met in person within 2 years
Pictures of us together
Photocopy of my husband passport page showing his entrance to the Philippines
Please be aware that fees and requirements may have changed since we submitted our petition on April 2, 2016. That time the fee is only $340 and requirements is depends on you if you both want to add more proof of meeting in person but ours is according to the instruction of visa service so we just followed it. And about forms, the G-325A forms are now no longer needed, this is because USCIS included it to the new revision of Form I-129F. Before I-129F, is just 6 pages but their new revision now is 13 pages. Click here for the new update Form I-129F.
Submitting I-129F Packet
Now that we have completed our I-129F packet my husband made sure he doubled check everything before submitting it. He sends our I-129F packet April 2, 2016, and USCIS received our packet on April 6, 2016. Some people don’t include G-1145 (E notification) to their packet but in my opinion, G-1145 is important because USCIS can notify you if they already get your package. It will lessen your worried what was happened to your package, you will not think if do they already receive it or not yet. My advice also is to put a cover letter to your I-129F packet which is optional because it helps the USCIS to know exactly what did you put in your packet when they open your package. And do not staple your forms and other documents together, USCIS won’t be happy to see it, much better to use a paper clip to easy for them to check and study your application one by one and piece by piece.
Things you should know after sending I-129F petition
Getting a notification from USCIS that they already received and accepted your packet.
USCIS should be cashed your filing fee.
You will receive a hard copy of receipt notice from USCIS also known as the notice of action (NOA1).
Since we included E-Notification form, the USCIS texted and emailed my husband after they received our package and I think after more than 1 week he received a hard copy of I-797C Notice of action (NOA1). After receiving NOA1 the next thing we should do is waiting for the approval of our petition. It takes 3-5 months before USCIS decide if the petition is approved or denied. There are cases that USCIS requesting additional evidence. It happens for those applicants that have insufficient documents, missing signature or USCIS thinks the relationship is not genuine and they need more evidence to give the final verdict or approval. There are some cases that USCIS also send back the packet to the petitioner it’s because of the wrong amount of filing fee. And if the application has been denied USCIS will give a chance to the applicants to appeal or reapply again if they failed to appeal to the certain period they gave.
Waiting for I-129F petition approval seems like forever especially to those couples who are very excited to live together in the US and wanted to get married as soon as possible. Our case approval took 77 days we got it June 23, 2016, can’t explain the happiness if you see to the case status that your case was approved, I’m sure it also happens to all applicants, feels like you want to jump because of happiness and tell to yourself, this is it and this is the beginning which is normal feeling to all applicants.
You can check your case status here.
After USCIS approved your petition, USCIS forwards your petition to the National Visa Center (NVC). And the NVC will be in charge to forward the case petition to the US embassy with a new case number. All applicants need to get Case number to NVC, you cannot pay visa and schedule the interview to US embassy if you don’t have yet case number from NVC.
We just pay visa services because we are both busy to our work plus the major reason is we need to apply K1 visa and CRBA at the same time which is confusing for us but if it’s only K1 visa I believed we can do it on our own. Here are some tips for you to do if you want to start to file K1 visa for your foreign fiancé(e) or if your budget is tight:
1. Go to the USCIS official website and get information about K1 visa.
2. Buy K1 Visa step by step guide, it helps to both of you to learn everything about K1 visa even without paying immigration lawyer or visa services.
3. Join some Facebook group that exclusively for K1 visa/Spousal visa only.
4. Don’t be shy to ask for help inside the FB group, they can help you a lot.
5. Do a research about K1 visa to google or youtube, people who been through to this process are willing to help for free through their blogs and story.
Hope those tips can help you and don’t forget to work with your partner with love and care, avoid misunderstanding just because one does not agree, try to work as a team for sure before you know it, you are done to K1 visa process.
Please visit and like married to a foreigner facebook page click here
If you are a Filipino married to a foreigner or even not yet married I’m inviting you both to join Married to a Foreigner facebook group click here