Multiple K1 Visa Petitions And Risk Of Denial
What are the odds that a foreigner would fall in love and get engaged to multiple U.S. citizens without intentionally doing so? Okay, I don’t know the answer to this but USCIS pays close attention to multiple k1 visa petitioners for the same beneficiary.
So, should you be worried if you’ve been petitioned multiple times for the K1 visa?
Simple asnwer is no. If you can prove that your previous engagement was genuine and not just for the purpose of a U.S. visa, then you shouldn’t have any trouble with applying for a 2nd K1 visa. Now, I will say that having 3 K1 visa applications will make a little more difficult because it makes it look like you were trying to find a U.S. citizen to marry.
Multiple K1 via petitions isn’t an automatic cause for visa denial but it just means you have to work harder than most applicants to prove your relationship is real.
Anne met her fiance Bobby while he was visiting her in the Philippines. After a quick courtship they knew they wanted to marry and have Anne move to the United States. Anne told Bobby that she had a previous K1 visa application submitted for her by her ex-fiance.
They are both concerned how this will affect their current K1 visa petition and whether this will have a negative impact on Anne’s K1 visa interview.
In the case above, Anne had only one other K1 visa application submitted for her so this next one will be the second. No waiver is required but she will need to explain the circumstances of why the first engagement didn’t work out.
Can I File For More Than 1 K1 Visa?
Okay, let me first make it clear that you won’t be able to file more than one K1 visa application at the same time. (Yes, that is obvious but it had to be said, right?)
The International Marriage Broker Regulation Act (IMBRA) has two restrictions on multiple K1 visas for the following two scenarios:
- The petitioner has filed 2 or more K1 visa petitions at anytime in the past, or
- The petitioner has previously had a K1 visa petition approved within the 2 years prior to the filing of the current petition.
If you’ve filed more than 2 K1 petitions EVER, then you will definitely need to file a waiver of this restriction. Factors the USCIS will consider in evaluating the waiver application include, but are not limited to:
- If there are any unusual circumstances (e.g. death or incapacity of prior beneficiary;
- If the petitioner has a history of domestic violence;
- If the petitioner has a pattern of filing multiple petitions for different beneficiaries at the same time
- filing and withdrawing petitions.
- obtaining approvals of petitions every few years.
If the petitioner has a history of violent crimes, USCIS will require “extraordinary circumstances” in order to grant a visa waiver.
Mary met her fiance Chris while he was visiting Italy on a vacation. After 6 weeks together exploring Rome and nearby cities, he decided to propose to her on the spot. She immediately said yes. When Chris returned to the United States he began gathering evidence for the K1 visa application.
Chris was upfront with Mary and let her know that he had filed 2 other K1 visas for women he had been engaged to but the relationship didn’t work out. One woman broke up with him and the other left him after entering the U.S. on her K1 visa.
In the case above, Chris will need to file for a waiver because had more 2 previous K1 petitions submitted before the one he will be submitting for Mary. Approval of his waiver will depend of the circumstances of the other two cases.
Multiple K1 Visa Petitions & Filing For A Waiver
Okay, now that we know we need to file waiver, let’s learn what the steps are to do this.
Thankfully, filing a waiver for multiple K1 visa applications is very simple. There won’t be extra forms to fill out or fees to pay.
To request a waiver, you simply write a letter requesting the waiver and explain the facts of your previous petitions. Simple, right? Be sure to include full names, dates, and the case numbers for each filing.
So long as USCIS does not think that you are abusing the system or not truly in love, you should get the waiver and be allowed to proceed with your new K1 fiance visa application.
Sample K1 Visa Waiver Letter Below:
United States Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
[Service Center Name]
PO Box xxxxxx
City, State, Zip
RE: Waiver for multiple K1 visa petition submissions.
To Whom It May Concern:
In compliance with the International Marriage Broker Regulation Act (IMBRA), I respectfully request a waiver on filing limitations in connection with my current K1 fiancé visa petition.
A waiver is appropriate in my circumstance because I have no criminal history with regard to the “specified crimes” under IMBRA. I have one prior approved Form I-129F for [ex-fiancé’s name] of the Republic of the Philippines, WACxxxxxxxxxx, MNLxxxxxxxxxx. Our relationship did not work out in the end so I did not pursue the petition further. [Add specific details about your current relationship here as appropriate]
The waiver letter above is simple and quick to the point. You don’t need to right pages and pages of explanation. Just keep it brief with the most important details included. USCIS just wants to know why you filed the first K1 visa and what the outcome was. If you didn’t complete the process, you should state why.
Then you should explain more about your current relationship and why you’d like to file the K1 visa petition a second time. USCIS is looking for any signs of immigration fraud.
Since the K1 visa is so easy to apply for (you don’t even have to get married abroad), it’s a target for dishonest people to try to get to the U.S. by lying or paying for a green card.
Final Thoughts On Multiple K1 Visa Petitions
So, to sum things up if you have multiple K1 visa petitions filed with USCIS, it doesn’t mean that your next application will be refused. As long as you have a good reason why the previous petitioners didn’t work out for you and file a waiver, you have a good chance of getting your current K1 fiance visa approved.
Sometimes, the circumstances of your previous relationship can cause some issues at the visa interview. I always recommend that you be honest with the consular officer but sometimes just providing basic information is enough.
The last thing you want is to give more details that are not asked for which cause you to look bad.
Samantha met and got engaged to Mohamed in Egypt after dating online for 6 months. After her first trip to Cairo, they get engaged and she quickly files for the I-129F petition. After the K1 visa is approved and Mohamed enters the U.S., he disappears and she decides to move on with her life.
A year later she meets Albert from Brazil who falls in love with her. She visits him after a quick courtship and they decide to get engaged. She returns to the U.S. to submit another I-129F petition for her new fiance. While waiting for his K1 visa interview, she finds out that her new fiance has 3 children and is still living with his prior girlfriend.
Samantha breaks things off with Albert. After 6 months, she meets another man on Facebook name Nevin from India. She decides to take things slow and after a year of long distance dating she meets him in person and they get engaged.
She now wants to submit a third I-129F petition but since she has 2 previous K1 visa applications submitted, she will be required to file a waiver.
Can you see now how things can start looking bad to the consular officer? It looks like Samantha is looking for a foreigner to marry and USCIS may think there is money being exchanged. She will need to explain the circumstances of each relationship and why things didin’t work out.
If you are concerned about how to present your case properly and explain your past issues, sign up for premium support to get assistance. It’s not impossible to file multiple K1 visa petitions that are successful, but you need to do it right.
Ayan is the founder of the Migrant Academy community, the My Path To Citizenship Blog and Podcast.
After successfully navigating the hurdles of US immigration. She now dedicates her time to helping other couples achieve their goals of starting their new life together in the US.