Applying for a K-3 "Non-immigrant Spousal Visa" in California

Foreigners with K-3 visas may live in California with their American spouse while their spousal visa application is pending. In order to obtain a K-3 visa, non-citizens must (1) submit to a medical exam, (2) have a consular interview, and (3) pay a visa fee of $265.

In this article our Los Angeles immigration lawyers answer frequently-asked-question about K-3 visa in California, including eligibility, application processes, time frames, and fees. Click on a topic to jump directly to that section:

Not married but engaged? Learn about coming to America on K-1 visas in California and K-2 visas in California.

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K-3 visas permit foreign spouses to live in the U.S. while their spousal visas are pending.

1. Can I get a K-3 visa in California?

Eligible K-3 visa applicants must be both:

It is not required that spousal visa applicants also get a K-3 visa. K-3 visas just allow spousal visa applicants to come into the U.S. sooner.1

2. How do I apply for a K-3 visa?

The steps for petitioning for a K-3 visa are:

  1. The sponsoring spouse in California files Form I-130 with the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
  2. After the USCIS acknowledges receipt, the sponsoring spouse files Form I-129f with the USCIS as well.
  3. If the National Visa Center (NVC) approves the I-129f petition, the foreign spouse is informed that he/she may apply for a K-3 visa.
  4. The foreign spouse goes to the doctor for a check-up and attends an interview at the local U.S. embassy or consulate. For the interview, the foreign spouse may need to bring his/her passport, marriage certificate, visa fees, and various other identifying documents.
  5. If the foreign spouse is granted a K-3 visa, he/she is allowed to travel to a U.S. port-of-entry. For non-citizens flying to Los Angeles, the port-of-entry is LAX Airport.
  6. Finally, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) makes the final determination of whether to allow the K-3 visa-holder into the U.S.

Once a K-3 visa-holder receives his/her spousal visa, he/she may be able to naturalize after three years.2

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3. How long does it take to get a K-3 visa?

About five (5) to eight (8) months.3

4. How much does it cost to get a K-3 visa?

$265 plus fees for fingerprints and the medical exam.4

5. Can children of K-3 visa holders come to the U.S.?

Yes, on K-4 visas. The sponsoring spouse just needs to add the children's names to the I-130 and I-129f petitions. Then the foreign spouse will receive K-4 applications for each child. 

Note that K-4 visas are available only to children who are under 21 and unmarried.5

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Call our California immigration attorneys at (855) 396-0370 for a FREE consultation.

Call a California immigration attorney...

If you are seeking a marriage visa in California, call our Los Angeles immigration attorneys at (855) 396-0370 for a free consultation. We will do everything to reunite your family in the U.S. as soon as possible.

Go to our California visa main page.

See our article on K-3 visas in Nevada.


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