US Permanent Resident Wife Or Husband Visa- All you need to know about getting a US visa for your spouse. As a permanent resident in the US, maybe you want your spouse in another country to join you in the US, but you don’t know how to go about it, this content will help you with every detail you need. Whether you are looking for an immigrant or non-immigrant visa, kindly explore this write-up to the end.

US Permanent Resident Wife or Husband Visa

Us Permanent Resident Wife Or Husband Visa

For US citizens, there are two ways to bring your foreign spouse (wife or husband) to the United States to live. The two ways are;

  • Immigrant visa for a Spouse of a U.S. Citizen (IR1 or CR1)
  • Nonimmigrant visa for spouse (K-3)

These are the two ways to bring your spouse to the US. Before I analyze these two methods, I would want to give a brief definition of what a spouse is.

What Is a Spouse?

A spouse is simply a legally wedded husband or wife. That you’re living together with a man or woman does not qualify a marriage for immigration. Common-law spouses may qualify as spouses for immigration purposes depending on the laws of the country where the common-law marriage happens. However, in cases of polygamy, only the first spouse may qualify as a spouse for immigration.

Immigrant Visa For a Spouse of a U.S. Citizen (IR1 or CR1)

This is an immigrant Petition for Alien Relative. Thus, it requires Form I-130.

1: The First Step Toward an Immigrant Visa:

Filing the Petition is to file a Petition for Alien Relative. That is Form I-130, with the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for your spouse (wife or husband) to immigrate to the United States. You can visit the USCIS website at  for instructions on how to file a petition, including where you should send the petition.

In some cases, a U.S. citizen staying abroad can file an immigrant visa petition outside of the US.

 2: U.S. Sponsor Minimum Age Requirement

There is no minimum age for a US sponsor (petitioner) to file a petition for a spouse. Moreover, you must be at least 18 years of age and have a residence (domicile) in the U.S. before you can sign the Affidavit of Support (Form I-864 or I-864EZ). The form is required for an immigrant visa for a spouse and other relatives of U.S. sponsors.

3: Requirements Documents For Immigrant Visa

In general, the following documents are required:

  • Passport(s) valid for six months beyond the intended date of entry into the US. unless longer validity is specifically requested by the U.S. Embassy/Consulate in your country.
  • Get an Affidavit of Support (I-864, I-864A, I-864 EZ, or I-864W, as appropriate) from the petitioner/U.S. sponsor.
  • Have Form DS-260, Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration Application.
  • Preview a sample DS-260 (6.4MB).
  • Two (2) 2×2 photographs.
  • Civil Documents for the applicant. The consular officer may ask for more info during your visa interview. So, get your original civil documents (or certified copies) such as birth and marriage certificates, as well as legible photocopies of all original civil documents, and any required translations to your immigrant visa interview.
  • Completed Medical Examination Forms – These forms are provided by the panel physician after you have completed your medical examination and vaccinations

These are basic requirements for a spouse visa.

4: Visa Interview

When the NVC determines the file is complete with all the required documents, they will schedule an interview appointment with the applicant. NVC will then send the file, containing the applicant’s petition and the documents listed above, to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where the applicant will be interviewed for a visa.

However, the applicant, petitioner, attorney, and third-party agent, if applicable, will receive appointment emails, or letters (if no email address is available), containing the date and time of the applicant’s visa interview along with instructions, including guidance for obtaining a medical examination.

Nonimmigrant Visa For Spouse (K-3)

Application for the nonimmigrant visa for a spouse (K-3) who married a U.S. citizen must be filed and the visa must be issued in the country where the marriage took place. After completing the visa process, and the visa is issued, the spouse can travel to the United States to wait for the processing of the immigrant visa case. Although Two petitions are required:  Petition for Alien Relative, Form I-130, and Petition for Alien Fiancé€, Form I-129F.

What Is a K-3 Visa?

The K-3 nonimmigrant visa is designed for the foreign-citizen spouse of a United States (U.S.) citizen. This type of visa is intended to shorten the physical separation between the foreign-citizen and U.S. citizen spouses by having the option to get a nonimmigrant K-3 visa overseas and enter the United States to await approval of the immigrant visa petition.

The K-3 visa recipients subsequently apply to adjust their status to a permanent resident (LPR) with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) upon approval of the petition.

The spouse of a U.S. citizen applying for a nonimmigrant K-3 visa must have an immigrant visa petition filed on his or her behalf by his or her U.S. citizen spouse and pending approval and a K-3 applicant must meet some It should be noted that under U.S. immigration law, a foreign citizen who marries a U.S. citizen outside the U.S. must apply for the K-3 visa in the country where the marriage took place.

However, eligible children of K-3 visa applicants receive K-4 visas. Both K-3 and the K-4 visas let their recipients stay in the United States while immigrant visa petitions are pending approval by USCIS.

1: The First Step: Filing the Petitions

The U.S. citizen sponsor must first file Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office that serves the area where you stay. Then, the USCIS will send a Notice of Action (Form I-797) receipt notice to inform you that it has received the petition. Visit the USCIS website under K-3/K-4 Nonimmigrant Visas for more information, at

2: Requirement For Nonimmigrant Spouse Visa

The foreign-citizen spouse, (and eligible children applying for K-4 visas) will be required to bring the following forms and documents to the visa interview:

  • A completed Form DS-160, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application.
  • A passport valid for travel to the US and with a validity date at least six months beyond your intended period of stay in the United States (except country-specific agreements provide exemptions).
  • Civil documents – the original(s) (or certified copies) and photocopies of the following docs;
  • Birth certificate
  • Marriage certificate for the marriage to the U.S. citizen spouse
  • Divorce or death certificate(s) of any previous spouse(s)
  • A police certificate from your present country of residence and all countries where you have lived for 6 months or more since age 16. (Police certificates are also required for accompanying children age 16 or older.)
  • Medical examination
  • Evidence of financial support (Form I-134, Affidavit of Support may be requested)
  • Two (2) 2×2 photographs.
  • Evidence of relationship with your U.S. citizen spouse

The consular officer may request additional information, such as wedding photographs and other proof that the marriage to your U.S. citizen spouse is genuine

Ineligibilities for Visas

Certain conditions and activities may make you, the applicant, ineligible for a visa. Examples of these ineligibilities include:

  • Drug trafficking
  • Overstaying a previous visa
  • Submitting fraudulent documents.

However, if you are ineligible for a visa, you will be informed by the Consular Officer and advised whether there is a waiver of the ineligibility and what the waiver process is.

For more information on US visas for spouses, visit,Form%20I-130%20is%20required.


Can My Spouse Come to the United States to Live While the Visa Petition Is Pending?

Yes. If you are a U.S. citizen, once you file Form I-130, your spouse is eligible to apply for a nonimmigrant K-3 visa. This will entitle him or her to come to the United States to live and work while the visa petition is pending.

 My Petition was Denied: Can I Appeal?

If the visa petition you filed is denied, the denial letter will enlighten you on how to appeal and when you must file the appeal. And after your appeal form and the required fee are processed, the appeal will be referred to the Board of Immigration Appeals.

My Petition Expired – Can It Be Extended?

The I-129F petition is valid for about 4 months from the date of approval by USCIS. Though a Consular Officer can extend the validity of the petition if it expires before visa processing is completed.

How Long Will It Take to Get My K Visa?

Once your case has been received from NVC by the U.S. Embassy or Consulate, the processing duration varies from case to case according to its circumstances. Moreover, some cases are delayed because applicants do not follow instructions carefully or supply incomplete information. (It is important to give them correct postal addresses and telephone numbers.) Also, some visa applications require further administrative processing, which takes additional time after the visa applicant’s interview by a Consular Officer.

Does My U.S. Citizen Spouse Need to File Separate Petitions for My Children?

No. Your children may apply for K-4 visas based on the approval of Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé€, that your U.S. citizen spouse filed on your behalf, but your U.S. citizen spouse must list the children on the petition. Separate visa applications must be submitted for each K-4 visa applicant, and each applicant must pay the K visa application fee.

Is it better to get a fiancé visa or spouse visa?

If your main goal is to get to the U.S. as fast as possible, then the K-1 fiancé€ visa is likely the fastest option. But if you want an actual green card as soon as possible, then a marriage-based visa will be quicker.

How long is a spouse visa valid for the US?

The I-129F petition is valid for about 4 months from the date of approval by USCIS. If it expires before visa processing is completed, a Consular Officer can extend the validity of the petition

What is the fastest way to bring my spouse to the USA?

Historically, family reunification is one of the easiest and fastest ways to bring  your loved ones to the United States


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here