People applying for K1 status often find it necessary to bring dependents to the U.S. as well. With the K2 visa, the children of your fiancé(e) can legally enter the country and share the benefits of having a nonimmigrant visa.
What is a K2 Visa?
This visa is designed to allow your fiancé(e)’s children to accompany him or her when they enter the U.S. During their stay in the country they will be able to study in the U.S. as well as work by applying for Employment Authorization Documents or completing form I-765.
Once you and your fiancé(e) have married, your dependent will also be able to adjust their status to an immigrant visa or apply for lawful permanent residency. This dependent would also be subject to the status of the K1 visa holder. This means that if the parent is forced to leave the country, their dependents must leave as well.
How to Qualify for a K2 Visa
Fortunately, the requirements for applying for a K-2 visa are few. The dependent must simply be the unmarried child of a K1 applicant that is not yet 21 years old at the time of filing. The child should be clear of any criminal charges or past immigration violations. They should also be seeking lawful permanent resident status in the U.S.
It is also important that you and your fiancé(e) are able to meet the minimum income requirement. This will prove that you can financially provide for the dependent during their stay in the U.S. Ask your immigration lawyer to learn if you meet these requirements.
The USCIS defines children as being under the age of 21 and only dependents under the age cap can benefit from visas for dependents. The Child Status Protection Act (CSPA) was created to allow applicants that qualified as children to retain their status as “children” after they age out. This benefit is only extended to dependents whose 21st birthday occurs during the parent visa applicant’s processing period.
However, because the K2 visa does not require a separate petition, dependents may not be protected by this act. Should the fiancé(e)’s child turn 21 during his or her parent’s visa processing period, they may not be eligible for K2 status. The regulations in this area are murky and guidance from an immigration attorney should be sought for all issues regarding this.
What is the K-2 Visa Process?
The process for obtaining a K-2 visa are relatively simple and depend on the age of the dependent.
In most cases, your fiancé(e)’s child will not require a separate petition. Instead, you just need to fill out the I-129F with the names of your fiancé(e)’s children included.
When the time comes for your fiancé(e) to apply for the visa at the consulate or embassy, the child will accompany him or her to complete their section of the application. If the child is very young, then your fiancé(e) can fill out the section on their behalf.
The consulate will require proof that you and your fiancé(e) can support the child throughout your stay in the U.S. This is done by completing form I-134 Affidavit of Support. Other documents you will need include:
- A valid passport
- A medical examination from an approved physician. Using the same physician for both the K1 and the K2 visa applicants is recommended.
- The completed visa application DS-160
- A copy of the child’s birth certificate
The K2 Visa Interview
Children over 14 years old will be required to accompany their parent to his or her K-1 visa interview at the U.S. consulate or embassy. They will be asked questions to help the immigration officer determine if the engagement is legitimate or a ploy to enter the U.S. under false pretenses.
The interview may involve asking the child questions about you, the U.S. citizen that the K1 applicant plans to marry. Example questions may include:
- Do you know who your father/mother is going to marry?
- Have you met this person?
- What can you tell me about this person?
To get a better understanding of what the interview will entail, it is always a good idea to consult an immigration attorney to make sure you, your fiancé(e), and any dependents are prepared for any questions you may be asked.
Children younger than 14 do not need to go to the interview. It is also important to know that once a K1 visa has been issued, the window of opportunity to apply for a K-2 visa will be limited to one year.
K2 Visa Filing Cost
Fortunately, because the K2 visa does not require a separate petition, the fees are combined with the cost of the K-1 application.
However, there are several fees involved with going through the K-class visa application process:
- USD 535 for I-129F filing fee
- USD 265 per applicant for the DS-160 visa application fee and consular interview
- Any additional cost incurred by travel, attorneys, passports, and the medical exam
How Our Immigration Lawyers Can Help
If you are a U.S. citizen looking to bring his or her fiancé(e) and their dependents into the country, you most likely have a wedding and travel arrangements to plan. Navigating the difficult legal terrain of immigration law can be dangerous for anyone who is not experienced. That’s why it is always a good idea to hire a qualified K2 visa attorney.
SGM Law Group attorney have extensive experience with family experience and have been helping people better understand their immigration situation for several years. We can help you through every step of the application process from the initial consultation to assisting you with filing the appropriate documents. That way you can avoid mistakes that may cost you time and money and allow you to be with those you love.