What is a Genuine Relationship Requirement for the K1 Visa interview

United States immigration law recognizes that, as an American citizen, you may want to bring a foreign national to the U.S. for the purpose of a later marriage. The k1 visa is the vehicle used to do this.

Immigration law specifically permits a k1 visa to be issued to individuals who want to come into the United States for the sole purpose of entering into a valid marriage. However, the law is not totally clear on what the word ‘valid’ means except that persons entering the U.S. on a K1 visa must be free to legally marry. For example, K1 fiance visas can’t be issued to individuals still married to someone else.

In addition, the process of granting a fiance visa needs to take into consideration whether the relationship is legitimate or possibly an arrangement entered into for the purpose of gaining immigration benefits. At the U.S. Embassy or consulate in every country, there are consular officers whose responsibility it is to process and approve K1 visa applications. It is these officers who are charged with determining whether or not the relationship is a bona fide one. If the official concludes the intended marriage is for immigration purposes alone, then that official is instructed to begin the process of revoking the k1 visa petition. This will eventually lead to the k1 visa application being denied.

It’s not necessary for the consular officer adjudicating the fiance visa application to believe both that the proposed marriage is not for bona fide reasons and that the individuals are entering into it for the purpose of getting an immigration benefit of some type, such as a U.S. visa or possibly a green card. In other words, they don’t have to believe you are trying to commit immigration fraud. Consular officers are directed to reject a K1 visa application if they simply suspect the relationship is not bona fide.

Bona fide doesn’t mean couples must prove they are deeply in love. The U.S. government does recognize that marriages happen for reasons that are not completely romantic. What K1 visa applicants need to show is they have an established relationship with the U.S. citizen petitioner, that they plan to get legally married within 90 days of entering the U.S. and intend to remain married. Not planning to live together can be a red flag leading to denial but not if a good reason exists for the arrangement.

This is why it is beneficial to have an immigration lawyer guiding your steps. If you have reason to think your circumstances might cause questions or be something of a red flag to a consular officer, it’s a good idea to consult a K1 visa lawyer before filing your application. A K1 Visa Lawyer can analyze the situation and help the visa applicants frame and explain their situations appropriately in their interviews for a U.S. visa.

We are here to help you successfully complete this process.