U.S. Marriage Visa or K-3 Spouse Visa
The Thai spouse of a US citizen and the children of the spouse may come to the US on non-immigrant visas. These are the K3 Visa (Spouse) and K4 Visa (Children). This would permit them to finalize the immigration process in the US. The timing is important as the K3 Visa in Thailand must have been granted to your Thai wife before a K4 visa can be applied for.
Definition of the word “Spouse” for a K3 Visa
For the purposes of a K3 visa the term “spouse” is defined as a person legally married to another. Partners that are cohabiting are not defined as a spouse for the purpose of the K3 Visa. Common-law partners however may be viewed as spouses for a K3 Visa application if it is recognized at the place of filing. Thailand does not recognize Common Law marriages.
Polygamy however is another issue. Only the first wife spouse/wife may apply on for a K3 Visa in a polygamist marriage. The United States does not permit polygamy. If you were previously married, you would need to show that you have divorced or your former spouse has passed away. Consult an U.S. immigration attorney before you apply for your K3 Visa.
Filing of the Two Petitions Requirement
The process starts with the I-130 petition for alien relative. Upon receiving the receipt for the I-130 petition, the U.S. citizen needs to file the I-129F form with supporting documentation. If the initial I-130 is approved before the I-129F, the K-3 petition will be closed and the I-130 will be allowed to continue to process.
After approval of the I-129F, the application will be sent to the National Visa Center who will forward the case to the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok. After the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok receives the approved petitions, they will send an extensive list of required documents and visa application forms.
After the required documents are submitted, the Embassy will schedule a visa interview with your spouse. Before the interview your spouse will be required to submit to a medical examination, which can be conducted at specified locations in Bangkok or Chiang Mai.
The last step is the interview at the U.S. Embassy. If everything goes well, a K3 visa will be issued for the spouse and K4 visas issued for the children of the spouse within a few days.
Start your K-3 Visa application. Visit Siam Legal’s K-3 Spouse Visa to start your visa application right away.
Extending the Petition
There is a time limit on the I-129F petition which is 4 months from the date on which is was approved. Once these 4 months have ended the embassy may extend the validity of your petition. That is to revalidate your petition.
Children and the K3 Visa
Children of the K3 visa holder do not need separate petition filled for them. The children need to be listed on the I-130 petition and the I-129 form. Forgetting to list their names will create problems later for the issuance of the K4 Visa. Normally the K4 visa will not be turned down because the children or child has not been listed.