The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has specific income requirements for obtaining a fiancé(e) K-1 nonimmigrant visa, which can sound daunting if you’re unfamiliar with these requirements. However, with the aid of an immigration lawyer and this quick guide from The Costas Network Law Center, you can get up to speed with K-1 visa income requirements.
A K-1 visa is a type of visa issued to the fiancé(e) of a United States citizen for the purpose of entry to the United States. A K-1 visa requires the holder to marry his or her petitioner within 90 days of arrival, which makes it important to ensure eligibility before applying for the K-1 visa. After marriage, the visa holder can adjust status and apply for a permanent resident card, also known as a Green Card. Having a permanent resident card makes the bearer statutorily entitled to apply for U.S. citizenship after providing proof that they have resided continuously in the United States for at least five years and are of good moral character.
The USCIS have placed income requirements to ensure that the fiancé(e) won’t be left to the welfare of the state or federal government if things do not go according to plan. One of these is that the sponsor has to have a stable, US-based income. The annual gross income must be equal to or greater than 100% of the federal poverty guidelines. An immigration attorney from our team can help explain the exact figures if you need them.
This means the sponsor should be able to provide proof of income from the last three years that include U.S. tax returns and a letter from the sponsor’s employer stating position and annual salary, among other details. Income is considered “stable” when it’s derived from active employment, benefits, retirement pensions, and Social Security. Some exceptions can be made for military or government personnel based overseas, while alternative documentation may be required for self-employed individuals.
If you have assets that can be readily liquidated they can be applied towards the income requirement. The sponsor’s assets must be at least three times the amount required from the poverty guidelines, while a green card holder’s assets must be five times. Cash, stocks, and homeownership or equity are some examples of readily liquidated assets.
Need help with sponsoring a K-1 visa or other issues that concern immigration law? The Costas Network Law Center is here to help. Call (216) 616-3103 (Ohio) or (346) 818-2726 (Texas) for a free initial phone consultation or email email@example.com.