K3 Visa Cambodia

K3 Visa Cambodia

This article was written to act as a short guide to the overall K-3 visa process and the impact of the US National Visa Center’s decision to administratively close certain K-3 visa applications.

The K3 visa process was once a commonly shared experience among those Americans wishing to bring their Cambodian spouse back to the United States of America. However, this method has increasingly fallen into disuse as relatively recent changes to policies at the National Visa Center have resulted in significantly lower numbers of K-3 visa applications receiving adjudication. An upshot to this situation is that more couples are compelled to apply for US Immigrant visa benefits for visas such as the CR1 visa and the IR1 visa.

At one time, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service had a substantial backlog of Immigrant visa petitions for the spouses of US Citizens. This state of affairs lead to the US Congress and President Bill Clinton enacting the so-called «Life Act» which created the K-3 and K-4 visa categories (the K4 visa, like the K2 visa, is a derivative travel document for the children of K3 visa seekers). In order to ultimately obtain a US K-3 visa, the American Citizen spouse was required to submit a supplemental K-3 application after the submission of a classic Immigrant visa petition. At the time of its inception the K3 visa was considered to be a significant benefit for the spouses of American Citizens as classic Immigrant visa petitions were taking as long as 3 years to simply receive USCIS adjudication which does not include the Consular Processing phase of the US visa process. The K-3 visa could generally be obtained in approximately 8 months, assuming petition and application approval and no unforeseen delays or legal grounds of inadmissibility.

At the time of this writing, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has drastically cut their backlog of non-adjudicated I-130 petitions which lead to a situation where the American State Department’s National Visa Center (NVC) was receiving approved Immigrant visa petitions either before or at the same time as approved K-3 supplemental petitions. It would seem that officials at NVC decided to «administratively close» K3 visa applications if the approved I-130 petition arrived at NVC at the same time or before the K-3 counterpart. This could be attributable to the fact that the K-3 is somewhat redundant in situations where the I-130 has already received USCIS approval. Furthermore, those Cambodian spouses of American Citizens entering the United States on a CR-1 visa or an IR-1 visa (the Immigrant spouse visa categories promulgated pursuant to an approved I-130 petition and subsequent immigrant visa application approval) will be granted Conditional or Unconditional Lawful Permanent Residence upon admission into the USA. Therefore, those entering the USA on an Immigrant visa are not required to adjust their status to permanent residence while a K-3 visa holder would still be required to either Consular Process their immigrant visa application or file for adjustment of status in the USA which can be a rather costly and time consuming endeavor.

Benjamin Hart is an American attorney. He is also the Managing Director of Integrity Legal (Thailand) Co. Ltd. and the International Director of White & Hart Ltd. Contact: 1-877-231-7533, +66(0)2-266-3698, or info@integrity-legal.com. See them on the World Wide Web at: CR1 Visa Cambodia or K1 Visa Cambodia .

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