Fiancé Visa or Spouse Visa: Which Is Faster?

If you’ve met the man or woman of your dreams from America and can’t decide between the fiancé visa or spouse visa, this post will help you make up your mind.

Ideally, you’ll want to go with the visa that is right for you and your partner but sometimes, it’s hard to make the choice without all the information being available.

The good news is that this post will guide you through the process of both the fiancé visa and spouse visa so you know all the details before choosing the right one for your family.

Case Example:

Amber is a US citizen who has met her boyfriend on Facebook. His name is Javier and he is from El Salvador. They have been dating for 15 months and are now ready to petition for Javier so he can move the US.

Amber is unsure which visa to go with and wants the fastest route for her boyfriend to come to the US.

Learn more about the K1 fiancé visa process.

Learn more about the CR1 spouse visa process.

What Is a Fiancé Visa?

Have you watched the show “90-day fiancé?

Well, it’s a reality show all about the K1 fiancé visa and details the lives of couples after they are in the US and planning their wedding.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t actually detail the process of getting the K1 visa too well. So, I’ll give you a brief summary of the fiancé visa process.

  • Step 1: Get engaged to your sweetheart.
  • Step 2: Gather evidence of meeting in person.
  • Step 3: Complete I-129F packet and send to USCIS.
  • Step 4: I-129F petition is approved by USCIS
  • Step 5: NVC will issue you a case number.
  • Step 6: You will complete online form DS-160.
  • Step 7: USC will complete I-134 affidavit of support.
  • Step 8: Complete medical exam.
  • Step 9: Completed K1 interview.
  • Step 10: Port of entry into US.

Although this looks like a simple 10 step process, it can take a long time to complete and there are chances of huge mistakes setting you back several months.

Frankly, I didn’t include any request for evidence (RFE) from USCIS in the detailed steps above because there is no guarantee that you will receive one.

As long as you submit a really strong case, you shouldn’t expect an RFE but if you do get one, you can respond quickly to overcome it.

Related Post: 2019 K1 Visa Process: How To Get Approved For Fiancé Visa

How Long Is The Fiancé Visa Process?

The fiancé visa process can take up to a year to complete but generally should be approved within 7-11 months.

Interestingly, it doesn’t take USCIS and NVC this long to process your case but the long delay seems to happen at the USCIS stage.

Why?

It’s because your case will be sitting on an adjudicators desk waiting to be reviewed. This time that you are waiting is not productive at all. Nothing is being done with your application just yet.

I’m sure you are wondering how you can speed up the approval of the I-129F petition? Well, folks, there isn’t much you can do. You’ll just need to wait for the notice of action (NOA2) to arrive in the mail.

Related Post: K1 Visa Denied Experiences 2019 – Case Studies

Related Podcast: EP10: K1 Visa Interview Questions and Answers

What Is a Spouse Visa?

On the other hand, the spouse visa is pretty self-explanatory. It’s a visa for the spouse of the US citizen or lawful permanent resident.

In this post, we will only be discussing cases where the petitioner is a US citizen. I don’t want to get into the process of a priority date when the US petitioner is a green card holder.

Finally, I’ve listed the 10 steps to the spouse visa process:

  • Step 1: Get married to your sweetheart.
  • Step 2: Gather evidence of a bona fide marriage.
  • Step 3: Complete I-130 packet and send to USCIS.
  • Step 4: I-130 petition is approved by USCIS
  • Step 5: NVC will issue you a case number.
  • Step 6: You will complete online form DS-260.
  • Step 7: USC will complete I-864 affidavit of support.
  • Step 8: Complete medical exam.
  • Step 9: Completed CR1 or IR1 interview.
  • Step 10: Port of entry into US.

If you’re thinking that the spouse visa process looks similar to the fiancé visa process, you are right.

The major steps are similar but there are some differences between them. For example, the type of evidence needed for the spouse visa is stronger than the evidence needed for the fiancé visa.

Related Post: 2019 CR1 Visa Process: Get Approved For The Spouse Visa In 10 Easy Steps

How Long Is The Spouse Visa Process?

Sadly, the spouse visa is currently taking minimum of 1 year to complete. So, if speed is the most important thing to you, you may want to consider the fiancé visa.

The reason the spouse visa takes so much longer than the fiancé visa is because the spouse visa allows the applicant to become a US lawful permanent resident upon entry into the US.

Contrast this to the fiancé visa where the beneficiary will need to marry and adjust status after arriving in the US and this can take another year or more to complete.

So, would you choose the fiancé visa or spouse visa? Still not sure?

Thankfully, there is no right or wrong choice here. If you choose the spouse visa, you will have more work upfront but when you enter the US it’s smooth sailing.

Related Post: CR1 Visa Cost To Sponsor Spouse For Green Card

Related Podcast: EP4: CR1 Spouse Visa Interview Questions & Answers

Which Visa Is Easier to Get Approved?

Okay, let’s now discuss which visa is easier to get approved: fiancé visa or spouse visa?

Interestingly, the answer to this question differs for each person based on the country they are applying from.

What do I mean by this?

Well, if you are applying from a country that is considered “high fraud” you may wish to get married and apply for the spouse visa because you have better odds of approval.

On the other hand, if you are applying from a “low fraud” country, the fiancé visa may be the faster route to America.

Related Post: K1 Visa Denied and What To Do Next

Related Podcast: EP1: CR1 vs K1: Which Visa Should You Choose?

What Countries Are Considered High Fraud?

The below list of high fraud countries are not an exhaustive list and there are many more countries that have not been named.

  • Mexico
  • Nigeria
  • Ghana
  • India

What Countries Are Considered Low Fraud?

The list of low fraud countries below is not a complete list. But most are considered low fraud if they are first world countries with similar standard of living to the US.

  • UK
  • Canada
  • France
  • Australia
  • Sweden

Fiancé Visa or Spouse Visa: Which Costs More?

Fiance Visa Cost Summary:

Related Post: K1 Visa Cost: How Much It Will Cost To Sponsor Fiancé

DescriptionCost
Filing fee for I-129F petition$535
Filing fee for the K1 visa application$265
Medical exam$200
Filing fee for adjustment of status + biometrics$1,225
Medical exam (vaccination only)$100
Total$2,325

Spouse Visa Cost Summary:

DescriptionCost
Filing fee for I-130 petition$535
Filing fee for the immigrant visa application$325
NVC I-864 review fee$120
Medical exam$200
USCIS immigrant fee$220
Total$1,400

Conclusion: Fiance Visa or Spouse Visa?

In conclusion, whether you decide to go with the fiancé visa or spouse visa is your choice but hopefully this review has helped to sway your decision.

There are pros and cons to both visas and only you and your partner know which is best for the two of you.

Additionally, if you choose the fiancé visa and you are not approved because the US consulate or embassy is difficult, you can definitely get married and apply for the fiancé visa.

Furthermore, if being a permanent resident after entering the US is important to you, then the spouse visa is the best option for you. You will avoid the additional step that the fiancé visa has which is to adjust status.

Personally, I chose the fiancé visa because it was a little faster and I didn’t want to separate from my husband when we got married. It’s a personal decision but I know some people like to hear how others made the choice.

About The Migrant Academy

The Migrant Academy is an online US immigration school and community for migrants who wish to immigrate to the Untied States. Our online spouse visa and fiancé visa courses are detailed, thorough, and easy to understand. Many couples have successfully been approved for their fiancé visa or spouse visa without hiring an attorney, find out how!

FREE CR1 Mini Course
Quickly Get Approved
For A CR1 Spouse Visa.
6 lessons delivered right to your inbox.
ENROLL
FREE K1 Mini Course
Quickly Get Approved
For A K1 Fiance Visa.
6 lessons delivered right to your inbox.
ENROLL

Leave a Reply

  Subscribe  
Notify of