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US Family Visas for German Citizens

If you are a German citizen, wishing to permanently join your family members in the US, you could be eligible to apply for a US Family Visa.

This process can be complicated to handle alone. Our lawyers at Total Law know the system and can guide you through the application smoothly, without any risk. Call +1 844 290 6312 today or contact us via our website.

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    US Family Visas for German Citizens: Overview

    There are two main categories of family visas in the US available to German citizens. The first category is immediate relative visas. These are for spouses, minor unmarried children, and parents of adult US citizens. The second visa category is family preference visas. These are for more distant relatives of US citizens, such as siblings and married children, as well as some relatives of lawful permanent residents.

    Regardless of the specific visa, all German applicants must prove they have a genuine family relationship with their petitioning relative in the US. They also have to demonstrate they will not become a public charge, or financial burden on the government if granted residency.

    US citizens can petition for a wider range of relatives compared to permanent residents. Citizens can file for their spouse, children, parents, and siblings. Permanent residents are limited to petitions for their spouse and unmarried children only. But in all cases, these family relationships must be thoroughly documented and verified by immigration authorities before a visa can be issued.

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    Types of Family Visas in the US

    Overview

    As a German citizen, there are several US Family Visa options to consider, depending on your plans and family needs. Whether you’re planning to reunite with your US citizen fiancé(e), bring your minor children to join you in the US or pursue your academic ambitions at a US institution, there’s a visa category available for you and your family.

    K1 Visa

    The K1 visa, also known as the Fiancé(e) Visa, allows German citizens engaged to a US citizen petitioner to enter the country and get married within 90 days of arrival.

    To apply, the US citizen petitioner must meet income requirements and file an I-129F petition on behalf of their German fiancé(e). This petition must include evidence proving a genuine relationship such as photos, correspondence, and proof of meeting in person. Once the I-129F is approved by USCIS, the German applicant can apply for the K1 visa by submitting the DS-160 form, civil documents, and police certificates to the embassy and attending a visa interview.

    After arriving in the US, the German fiancé(e) must marry their US citizen petitioner within 90 days. The German can then file for adjustment of status to a permanent resident by submitting Form I-485 after the marriage.

    K2 Visa

    The K2 visa allows the minor, unmarried children under 21 years old of a K1 visa holder to legally enter and temporarily reside in the US with their parent. Eligible K2 dependents include biological children, stepchildren, and legally adopted children of the K1 primary applicant.

    To get a K2 visa, the child must be listed on the I-129F petition filed by the US citizen petitioner requesting a K1 for their fiancé(e). They are also required to complete DS-160 forms, submit civil documents, and attend a consular interview. Children with K2 status are able to lawfully remain in the US while their parent applies for adjustment of status to a marriage-based Green Card.

    K2 visa holders cannot work upon arrival but may attend school. They can later apply for work permits and status adjustment once the K1 parent adjusts their status after marriage.

    F1 Visa

    The F1 visa is a nonimmigrant student visa that allows eligible German citizens to enter the

    US to study at an accredited university, college, seminary, conservatory, or language training program.

    To qualify for an F1 visa, German students first must be accepted into a full course of study by a school approved by the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP). They must submit documentation including an I-20 form from the school, proof of funds to cover tuition and living costs, and evidence of ties to Germany to demonstrate they do not intend to immigrate on a permanent basis.

    Once issued, the F1 visa allows German citizens to reside in the US during their full course of study. F1 students are allowed to work part-time on campus but cannot work off campus without authorization. After completing their program, German F1 holders have a 60-day period to depart the US or transfer to a new school.

    F2 Visa

    The F2 visa is a nonimmigrant dependent visa available to eligible spouses and minor children of F1 student visa holders. It allows certain family members of German citizens studying in the US to accompany the F1 visa holder during their program.

    To get F2 status, eligible dependents must be listed on the F1 visa holder’s I-20 form issued by the academic institution. They need to complete the DS-160 form, submit proof of relationship such as marriage or birth certificates, and attend a visa interview at the embassy. During the interview, F2 applicants must demonstrate significant financial and emotional ties to the F1 visa holder.

    Once approved, F2 visa dependents can enter the US and remain for the same duration as the F1 student. F2 visa holders are strictly prohibited from any form of employment in the US.

    F1 Green Card

    The F1 Green Card allows unmarried adult children of US citizens to immigrate and obtain permanent residency, similar to how the K1 visa functions for fiancé(e)s.

    To apply, the US citizen parent must meet income requirements and file an I-130 petition on behalf of their unmarried adult child in Germany over the age of 21. This petition must include evidence proving their familial relationship such as birth certificates and documents.

    Once the I-130 petition is approved by USCIS, the German applicant can apply for the F1 visa by submitting the DS-160 form, civil documents, and police certificates to the embassy and attending a visa interview. After arriving in the US, the German F1 visa holder can file for adjustment of status to a permanent resident by submitting Form I-485.

    What Are the Eligibility Requirements for a US Visa?

    Overview

    German citizens applying for a US family visa must prove they can support themselves. They cannot depend on government benefits. Applicants also need to undergo medical exams and pass background checks.

    K1 Visa (Fiancé Visa)

    To qualify for a K1 Visa, you must meet the following criteria:

    • The US sponsor must be a citizen, not just a permanent resident
    • Within 90 days after entering the US, the couple should plan to marry
    • The couple must have met in person at least once in the past 2 years before applying, unless exempt
    • Both partners need to be at least 18 years old when they apply
    • Neither partner can have a criminal record
    • The US sponsor has to have enough income to support their fiancé(e)
    • Completing a medical exam is required for the German citizen
    • Neither partner can already be married
    • Evidence of a genuine relationship must be provided by the couple

    K2 Visa (for children of K1 Visa holders)

    To qualify for the K2 Visa the child must:

    • Be under 21 years old and unmarried
    • Be the minor child of the K1 Visa holder
    • Plan to immigrate to the US with the K1 parent
    • Get a medical exam
    • Attend a visa interview at the US Embassy
    • Have a clean criminal record
    • Intend to live with the K1 parent in the US

    Note that the US citizen sponsoring the K1 Visa must file Form I-129F for the K2 child. The child’s relationship to the K1 Visa holder needs to be proven through birth certificates or legal documents.

    F1 Visa

    To qualify for an F1 Visa, you must meet these criteria:

    • Be enrolled in an academic program in the US at a school approved to accept international students
    • Provide proof you have enough funds to pay for tuition and living expenses
    • Demonstrate proficient English skills for the academic program
    • Have a residence abroad
    • Pass a medical exam
    • Have a clean criminal record

    F2 Visa (for children of F1 visa holders)

    To qualify for an F2 Visa, the child:

    • Needs to be the spouse or minor child of the F1 visa holder
    • Must provide proof of relationship to the F1 visa holder
    • Should plan to accompany the F1 visa holder to the US
    • Requires a medical exam
    • Must attend a visa interview at the US Embassy
    • Cannot have a criminal record
    • Intends to reside with the F1 visa holder in the US

    Note that the F1 visa holder has to file Form I-20 for any F2 dependents. Legal documents like birth certificates or marriage certificates will be needed to prove the relationship.

    F1 Green Card Visa

    To qualify for an F1 Green Card Visa , the applicant:

    • Needs to be the unmarried adult child over 21 of a US citizen parent
    • Must provide proof of relationship to the US citizen parent such as birth certificates
    • Should have their US citizen parent file an I-130 petition on their behalf
    • Requires a medical exam by an approved doctor
    • Must attend a visa interview at the US Embassy
    • Cannot have a criminal record or other inadmissibility issues
    • Intends to permanently reside with or near their US citizen parent.

    Dive into the Family Visa options for German citizens in the US. Let our experts navigate the process for you. Contact Us

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      Medical Requirements for Getting a US Visa

      German citizens must complete a medical exam to meet health and security standards before getting a US visa and this should be done by an approved physician. The exam also requires a fee, which can vary depending on the age of the applicant.

      US law requires immigrant visa applicants, including adopted children, to get certain vaccinations before the visa is issued. However, parents can sign an affidavit to postpone vaccinations for 30 days after the child’s US arrival, if medically appropriate.

      The hospital will send the medical report to the Immigrant Visa Unit after the medical exam is finished. K1/K2 Visa applicants will receive a sealed report to bring to the visa interview. It’s important to keep this envelope with the report unopened.

      Financial Requirements

      K1/K2 Visa

      The US citizen sponsor must file an Affidavit of Support (Form I-134) showing they have enough income/assets to support their fiancé(e). This form includes the sponsor’s income, employment, and assets.

      The income requirements depend on the sponsor’s household size and federal poverty guidelines. Typically the sponsor’s income should be at least 125% of the poverty level for their household size. Those who don’t meet this can still qualify by showing enough assets or getting a joint sponsor who does meet the income threshold.

      Not sure if you meet the financial requirements to sponsor a US family visa? Our immigration lawyers at Total Law have helped reunite families in the US for years and are experts and handling the application processes. Call us at +1 844 290 6312 or use our online chat.

      F1/F2 Visa

      F1 student visa applicants must provide proof they have sufficient funds to cover tuition, fees, and living expenses for their entire program of study. This is usually done by showing personal/family funds in a bank statement, government sponsorship letter, scholarship award, etc. The school will provide an estimate of costs to determine the total funds required.

      F2 dependents must demonstrate the F1 visa holder has enough financial support to cover living expenses for themself and all dependents in the US.

      F1 Green Card Visa

      Similarly to the K1/K2 Visa, the US citizen must file the I-134 Form and prove that they have the financial means to support the F1 Green Card Visa applicant. The petitioner must include their recent tax returns, W-2s, pay stubs, and bank statements to demonstrate their income.

      The income requirements depend on the US citizen’s household size and federal poverty guidelines. Typically, their household income should be at least 125% of the poverty level for their household size. Petitioners who do not meet this income threshold can still qualify by showing sufficient assets or getting a joint sponsor.

      Fees and Processing Times

      K1/K2

      If you’re applying for a K1 Fiancé(e) Visa, the total cost is around $800 in total. This fee covers the application cost and the medical examination. You will not be able to schedule your visa appointment without first paying the online fee.

      K2 visa applicants will also need to pay the necessary $160 MRV fee.

      The processing time for a K1/K2 Visa from Germany can vary, but it usually takes about 10 to 12 months from when you first submit your application to when you have your visa interview and receive the visa.

      F1/F2

      To apply for an F1 visa, you must pay the required application and SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) fees. The MRV fee is $160. The SEVIS fee costs $350 and is paid separately to the SEVIS.

      F2 visa applicants will also need to pay the necessary $160 MRV fee.

      The processing time for F1/F2 visas can vary, but it typically takes a few weeks to a few months, depending on various factors, including the US embassy or consulate’s workload and the specific circumstances of the applicant.

      Additionally, all individuals issued immigrant visas overseas must pay a $220 USCIS Immigrant Fee before travelling to the US.

      Yearning to reunite with family in the US? Secure your Family Visa with ease. Reach out to us today for expert guidance. Contact Us

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        How Can Our Lawyers at Total Law Help?

        We understand that applying for a US Family Visa can be quite overwhelming. That’s where Total Law comes in to help you with a professional and simplified approach. We’re here to make your dream of a family reunion in the US a reality.

        Our immigration lawyers are not just exceptional experts; they’re here to support you every step of the way. We’ll guide you through each step of the visa application process, making it easy to understand and ensuring you have all the necessary documents ready.

        Right from the start, we’re here to help you and your family. While we can’t change the application outcome or speed up processing times, we can help you avoid common mistakes that might result in visa denials. With our help, your application will be complete and error-free.

        Contact us by calling +1 844 290 6312 or message us via our online chat. Focus on your family and let us handle the visa application process so you can travel stress-free.

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                  Related pages for your continued reading.

                  Frequently Asked Questions

                  Yes, you can change schools on an F1 visa but the process must be followed carefully to maintain your legal status. You have to get accepted to the new school first. That school issues a new I-20 form you submit to USCIS with an application to transfer your SEVIS record. Once approved, you can transfer.

                  You cannot renew an F1 visa inside the US. You must renew it at a US embassy/consulate abroad. An unexpired F1 visa in your passport lets you re-enter for the next school term. But if it has expired, you’ll need to renew it before any international travel.

                  Yes, you can travel internationally while your green card application is pending but you must obtain advance parole first. This allows temporary re-entry into the US and requires filing Form I-131.