An envelope with the title K-1 Visa Application Assembling Tips.

K-1 Visa Application Assembling Tips- I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance

K-1 Visa Application Assembling Introduction

Many couples filing an I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance with USCIS have questions concerning K-1 Visa Application assembling.

Therefore, we provide this blog post on K-1 Visa Application assembling tips to aide applicants with this concern.

USCIS does provide some guidance on K-1 Visa Application assembling. However, beyond their guidance, there is no set exact way to assemble the package.

Firstly, we provide a link to the USCIS guidance on assembling the package.

Secondly, we summarize the key points in the USCIS guidance.

Lastly, we give an example of an I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance for submittal to USCIS.



Disclaimer

While all attempts are made to present correct information, it may not be appropriate for your specific circumstances and information may become outdated. See our Disclaimer page for more information.

LoveVisaLife does not provide legal advice and nothing contained herein shall be construed as legal advice. We are only providing tips and an example of typical I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance. The full contents of LoveVisaLife.com, such as text, comments, graphics, images, videos and other content contained on this site are for informational purposes only. For this reason, if you need legal advice, you should contact an attorney.  Accordingly, the content of this site is not intended to be a substitute for professional legal advice.

USCIS Guidance on K-1 Visa Application Assembling

USCIS Guidance Documents

Click here for USCIS’ General Tips on Assembling Applications for Mailing.

In addition, click here for USCIS’ Tips for filing forms with USCIS.

Also, there is guidance within the USCIS I-129F webpage found here.

Summary of USCIS Guidance Documents

General Tips on Assembling Applications for Mailing

Here we provide is a summary of the important information contained in USCIS’ General Tips on Assembling Applications for Mailing. These tips specifically help you in your K-1 Visa Application assembling. In your K-1 Visa Application Assembling:

  • Do not use binders or folders that cannot be easily disassembled. Use file folders with top fasteners.


  • Use ACCO fasteners or binder clips to hold together thick or bulky applications or petitions. Two-hole punching the top of the material for easy placement in the file is appreciated.



  • The use of tabs assist in locating items listed as attachments. The tabs should be placed on the bottom and not the side for ease in filing.


  • Avoid using heavy-duty staples; instead use ACCO fasteners or heavy clips. We like using the heavy clips versus the ACCO fasteners as the clips can grasp the check to USCIS and passport photographs.


  • Avoid submitting originals unless specifically required.
  • Avoid submitting over sized documentation when possible.
  • If you are sending more than one case in an envelope, clearly separate the cases by rubber band or clip fasteners.
  • Keep copies of all submissions. Don’t assume the officer will have access to a prior file or record. Submit as complete a packet as possible so the case can be adjudicated from what you submit. Submit a complete packet of information for each petition or application. If officers have to review prior files or records, the adjudication of the case can be delayed substantially.
  • Be sure to complete all pertinent items on the petition or application. Ensure all entries on the forms are legible. Note the appropriate consulate, embassy, or a request to adjust status on the petition. Do not enter “N/A” when “None” is appropriate.
  • If you believe your situation to be unique, explain it fully in an attachment to the packet, not as a cover letter.
  • Submit certified translations to English for all foreign language documents. The translator must certify that s/he is competent to translate and that the translation is accurate.
  • USCIS no longer routinely requires submission of original documents or “certified copies.” Instead, ordinary legible photocopies of such documents (including naturalization certificates and alien registration cards) will be acceptable for initial filing and approval of petitions and applications.


Tips for filing forms with USCIS

Click here for USCIS’ Tips for Filing Forms with USCIS.

In summary, the following are the important parts of these tips to ensure your form is accepted for processing:
  1. Use the most current form version.  Find the most current forms at the USCIS website here.
  2. When possible, download the form from the USCIS website and complete it with a computer.
  3. If you hand write your answers, use black ink. Make sure your entries are neat, legible, and within the space provided.
  4. USCIS uses special scanners to read your forms and documents. The scanners will not properly read information that is greyed out, highlighted or corrected using correction fluid or tape.
  5. If you make an error, start over with a clean form.
  6. Complete the entire form.
  7. USCIS prefers that you download forms from their website, complete them electronically, and then print your forms to submit.
  8. Sign the form. Forms not signed will NOT be accepted. This could get you a denial.
  9. Pay the correct fee.
  10. Answer all questions completely and accurately.
  11. If filing multiple forms, write your name and date of birth EXACTLY the same way on each form.
  12. Mail the form(s) to the correct address using an approved method of delivery. See our K-1 Fiance Visa Web page by clicking here or USCIS’s I-129F page here for the addresses and approved methods of delivery.

K-1 Visa Application Assembling Example

Firstly, click here to go to our website page on K-1 Fiance Visa- USCIS Phase in order to see all of the items needed in your I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance. In addition, go here to the I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance Instructions to see information required.

Completed Package Example

The photo below shows an example of a fully assembled I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance.

I-129F Petition for Alien Fiance K-1 Visa Application Assembling

As shown, notice the following:

  • A large binder ring was used to clip the entire package together. The binder clip easily clips the entire package and holds the check and photos nicely.
  • Tabs were placed at the bottom, not the sides.
  • The USCIS check for the USCIS fee of $535 was clipped at the very front. Update 2/17/18: The USCIS fee may be paid by check, money order or credit card. If by check or money order, include the check or money order with the I-129F application. If paying by credit card, complete and sign Form G-1450. Then, place G-1450 at the top of your petition package when submitting it. See our blog post, USCIS Accepts Credit Card Payent for more information.

Check or Money Order for USCIS Processing Fee

Your USCIS Filing Fee of $535 (as of December 2016). For example, a check, money order or credit card payable to USCIS are all acceptable forms of payment.

Update 2/17/18: The USCIS fee may be paid by check, money order or credit card. If by check or money order, include the checkor money order with the I-129F application. If paying by credit card, complete and sign Form G-1450. Then, place G-1450 at the top of your petition package when submitting it. See our blog post, USCIS Accepts Credit Card Payent for more information.

As shown above, the check for the USCIS fee of $535 is at the very front of the package. If paying by credit card, place G-1450 at the very front of the package.

Passport Type Photos

Obtain one passport type photograph (see photo specifications)of the petitioner (U.S. Citizen) and the beneficiaries (Fiance(e) and children, if applicable). Next, write the full name of the person on the back of each photo.  Finally, place the photos in a zip lock bag and include in the submission package as shown in the photo above.

Cover Letter

It is not mandatory to submit a cover letter when you file a Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance. However, a cover letter helps to introduce and clarify the purpose of the petition. In addition, a cover letter provides a list of which documents are within to support the petition.

Click here to see our blog post on “USCIS Cover Letter Examples- Form I-129F Petition for Alien Fiance“.

In this blog post, we specifically provide a draft example in Word format for you to edit to your needs.

cover letter

Forms

Complete the following forms as part of the K-1 Fiance(e) Visa USCIS Phase:

  1. I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance(e) (4/10/17)– Complete this for the Beneficiary. Also, list any children of the Beneficiary if you are intending a K-2 Visa for them.
  2. G-1145, E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance-(optional)- This form is for the Petitioner or applicant in order to receive an electronic notification (email) that USCIS has received the application. Thus, this is a good thing to do as it gives you your USCIS number.

Remember, always check the USCIS website here to make sure that you are using the most current forms. Also, see the !-129F instructions and checklist.

More Guidance

Here is some more guidance from USCIS on filing Form I-129F:

“Complete all sections of the form. The form will be rejected if these fields are missing:

  • Part 1. Information About You
    • Classification Sought for Your Beneficiary
    • Family Name
    • Your Mailing Address
    • Date of Birth
  • Part 2. Information About Your Beneficiary
    • Classification Sought for Beneficiary
    • Family Name
    • Date of Birth

Don’t forget to sign your form!  We will reject and return any unsigned form.”

Form G-1145, E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance

G-1145, E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance-(optional)- This form is for the Petitioner or applicant in order to receive an electronic notification (email) that USCIS has received the application. Thus, this is a good thing to do as it gives you your USCIS number. The USCIS I-129F webpage specifically requests to clip the G-1145 towards the front of the application.

Form G-1145 E-Notification

Form I-129

I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance(e) (4/10/17)– Complete this form with information on both the Petitioner and Beneficiary. Also, list any children of the Beneficiary if you are intending a K-2 Visa for them. Make sure you sign this form!!!

Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance

 

Proof of U.S. Citizenship for Petitioner

Copy of the Petitioner’s (U.S. Citizen’s) birth certificate (front and back), a copy of all pages of the US Citizen’s passport issued with a validity of at least 5 years or a copy of the US Citizen’s naturalization certificate (front and back). These are to establish proof of U.S. Citizenship of the petitioner. You can specifically use any one of these.

U.S. birth certificate showing proof of U.S. citizenship.

 

Legal Termination of All Marriages

Proof of legal termination of all prior marriages for both the Petitioner and the Beneficiary, if applicable. For example, a copy of a divorce decree, annulment or a death certificate are all acceptable. Also, make sure to include all pages.

 

Legal termination of marriage, divore decree

 

The U.S. Government specifically does not keep a central statistical registry for births, marriages and deaths and cannot verify this information. On the other hand,  many other foreign countries do keep a statistical registry on marriage.  For example, my wife’s country of the Philippines has the Philippine Statistical Authority that tracks marriages in a database.

If your fiance has never been married and his/her country has a central statistical registry for marriages, specifically request a report documenting that he or she has never been married. Include this document as an additional evidence in your I-129F, petition for Alien Fiance.

For example, in the Philippines, this is called a CENOMAR (Certificate of No Marriage). Include a document, if available, providing a certificate of no marriage.

Philippine CENOMAR

I-94 Arrival-Departure Record

IF your fiance has ever been to United States before, submit the Form I-94 with your I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance.  On the other hand, if your fiance has never been to the United States, then it is not a requirement.

I-94 Departure Record

See the following from the I-129F Instructions:

If U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) or USCIS issued your beneficiary a Form I-94, Arrival-Departure Record, provide the Form I-94 number and date that your beneficiary’s authorized period of stay expires or expired (as shown on Form I-94). The Form I-94 number also is known as the Departure Number on some versions of Form I-94.

NOTE:

If your beneficiary was admitted to the United States by CBP at an airport or seaport after April 30, 2013, he or she may have been issued an electronic Form I-94 by CBP, instead of a paper Form I-94. You may visit the CBP website at www.cbp.gov/i94 to obtain a paper version of an electronic Form I-94.

CBP does not charge a fee for this service. Some travelers admitted to the United States at a land border, airport, or seaport, after April 30, 2013, with a passport or travel document, who were issued a paper Form I-94 by CBP, may also be able to obtain a replacement Form I-94 from the CBP website without charge.

If your beneficiary’s Form I-94 cannot be obtained from the CBP website, it may be obtained by filing Form I-102, Application for Replacement/Initial Non-immigrant Arrival Departure Record, with USCIS. USCIS does charge a fee for this service. Passport and Travel Document Numbers.

If your beneficiary used a passport or travel document to travel to the United States, enter either the passport or travel document information in the appropriate space on the petition, even if the passport or travel document is currently expired.”

Intent to Marry Within 90 Day of Entering U.S.

I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance Instructions specifically states:

Submit evidence that you and your fiancé(e) intend to marry within 90 days of your fiancé(e)’s entry as a K-1 nonimmigrant. Evidence of your intention to marry may include statements of intent to marry signed by both you and your fiancé(e) or any other evidence that establishes, by a preponderance of the evidence, your mutual intention..”

Click here for our blog post on the required Intent to Marry Statement or Letter. We provide information and an example in Word format for you to edit and tailor to your own situation.

Intent to Marry Statement Example.

In-Person Meeting Documentation

Declaration of How We Met

I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance Instructions specifically states:

“Submit evidence that you and your fiancé(e) met in person during the 2-year period immediately before you filed this petition. Evidence of this meeting may include, but is not limited to, a written statement from you and/or your fiancé(e) stating the circumstances of your meeting…”

Click here for our blog post on the required Declaration of How We Met Statement or Letter. We provide information and an example in Word format for you to edit and tailor to your own situation.

Declaration of how we met example.

Plane Tickets

Plane tickets prove that you traveled to the place of your fiance.  Provide a copy of your plane tickets or boarding passes. Just copy them onto photo copy paper. If you do not have the plane tickets or boarding passes anymore, don’t worry. A copy of your itinerary also works.

Passport Pages

Provide copies of your passport pages. These pages show your stamped entry and exit to your fiance’s country. These are also a good method of showing that you visited. Make sure that you can read the country and dates on the stamps.

 passport stamps help prove in-person meeting

Photographs

Although not specifically mentioned in the instructions, photographs are a great way to also prove your in-person meeting requirement. Only summit a few photographs. For example, 3 at a minimum and 9 at a maximum is fine. However, do not submit a photo album. Usually, USCIS will most likely return your photo album.

Photos of you and your fiance together are great. In addition, provide one or two photographs of you and your fiance with some of your fiance’s family. In fact, the photos show that other people know of the relationship.

Ordinarily, you will not get these photos back.

There are several ways to submit your photographs including:

  • Placing them inside of a zip lock bag.  If you do this, make sure that you write the names, date and location on the back of each photograph.
  • Placing them inside of a photo sheet protectors. Again, make sure that you write the names, date and location on the back of each photograph.
  • Taping them to sheets of blank 8 1/2″ x 11″ paper. If you do this, make sure that you write the names, date and location below each photograph.
  • Printing photos on paper, Again, make sure that you write the names, date and location below each photograph.

Photographs proving in-sperson meeting for I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance.

Other Evidence

Additionally, if you have any other evidence of meeting in person, provide a copy of them.

On-going Relationship Examples

Additionally, provide proof of your ongoing and genuine relationship in your package. This may benefit you by allowing the embassy staff to have access to this information prior to the interview. In fact, many high risk consulates approach cases with a skeptical eye. On the other hand, providing this information early on in the original I-129F package will help them in their preliminary review of your case.

The following items do not show proof of having met in the last two years. However, they show proof of an ongoing relationship:

    • Copies of chat records. Just provide a few from different periods of time in your relationship. Provide a couple from the beginning, middle and current.
    • Land line and cell phone bills.
    • Appropriate letters and emails.
    • Engagement ring receipt.
    • Other items.

Other Supporting Documentation

Not Included in this K-1 Visa Application Assembling Example

There may be other supporting documentation required for your specific circumstances that we did not include in our example I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance.

This section describes some other documents to submit depending on your circumstances.

If these items do not pertain to your circumstances, then you do not need to submit them.

Evidence of Legal Name Change

If either you or your beneficiary use a name other than the one shown on evidence submitted in support of your petition, you must submit copies of the legal documents (such as a marriage certificate, adoption decree, or court order) reflecting the legal name change.

Criminal History Documents

I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance Instructions specifically states:

“If you indicated “Yes” in Item Number 4.a., provide information that explains the circumstances, places, dates, and outcomes for each incident of arrest, citation, charge, indictment, conviction, fine, or imprisonment. You must submit court certified copies of the arrest record and/or disposition for each incident unless you submit a certified statement from the court indicating that no record exists of your arrest, citation, charge, indictment, conviction, fine, or imprisonment.”

We specifically do not provide any advice here on documents needed for any criminal history.

Multiple Filer Waiver Request

I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiance Instructions specifically states:

“You must request a waiver of the International Marriage Broker Regulation Act (IMBRA) filing limitations if:

1. You are filing this petition on behalf of your fiancé(e) and you previously filed Form I-129Fs on behalf of two or more fiancé(e) beneficiaries; or

2. You are filing this petition on behalf of your fiancé(e), you have previously had a Form I-129F approved, and less than two years have passed since the filing date of your previously approved petition.”

Visa Consultant

If this process seems too difficult for you, we recommend that you use a visa/immigration consultant. For this purpose, we recommend using Rapid Visa.

A picture of us at the Rapid Visa office in Manila after Lea Passed her Spousal Visa Interview.
Lea, our son and I at Rapid Visa’s office in Manila after Lea passed her Spousal Visa interview.