Do Ihave to get married when my fiance comes to the U.S. if he is granted an engagement VISA?

I am a U.S. citizen and my boyfriend lives in Armenia; we will soon be engaged. I really want him to come meet my family here in the U.S. but I don’t know which VISA would allow him to come to the U.S. Would an engagement visa work? We can’t afford to get married now, so marriage might be postponed. Can he still be granted an engagement visa?

Asked on October 26, 2011 under Immigration Law, California


SB, Member, California / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you petition for a fiance visa, that process will take about 9-12 months and when he enters the US on that visa, he will have 90 days within which you will have to be married.  If you do not, he will become unlawfully present in the US and will have no other ways to legalize his status in the US.  So, if you do the fiance visa, you have to have the intention to get married within about a year from the time you submit the petition.  If you just want him to come visit your family, he can try to get a visitor's visa to come to the US.  I don't know anything about his situation so I don't know whether or not it is likely that he will get the visitor's visa or not, but certainly he can try for that first and if that does not work, you can then always go the fiance visa route.

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