When you are married to a Thai national and have registered your marriage in Thailand you can apply for a US spouse visa for a Thai while in Thailand. You wife can go to the US on a K3 visa and the children can go on a K4 visa. Normally these are applied for at the same time. Speak to an immigration lawyer in Thailand for more guidance and assistance.
What Is a “Spouse”?
Traditional Thai marriages are not acceptable for a visa application as the marriage has to be registered. You will need to have a marriage certificate issued in Thailand. The traditional weddings in Thailand are more of a common law type marriage as is not acceptable to the US government for the purposes of the K1 visa.
Also note that under US and Thai law plural marriages are not allowed and you cannot apply for a K3 visa for your minor wife if you have one in Thailand. If you are divorced then you will need a copy of your divorce decree as well as a death certificate if you wife had died.
How Much Does It Cost?
In Thailand you fees would vary depending on what outstanding issues there are. As an example an appeal on a denied visa in Thailand will cost more than a standard K3 visa application. There will also be the cost of the K4 visa for the child or children. If you had adopted a child in Thailand then all those documents might also be required. The fees are normally as follows:
- · Filing an immigrant petition;
- · Payment of the visa application processing fee;
- · Medical examinations;
- · Fingerprinting fees and police clearance certificate;
- · Translation, certification and document processing.
Most law firms in Thailand tend to charge flat rates. Unlike the West where everything is based on applicable fees for copies, transport and telephone calls. In Thailand there is just a flat fee for everything together. This is set at the time of the interview and application.
How long does it take?
The visa can take about 8 months to complete. There are many advantages of the K3 visa over the K1 fiancée visa. There is also the option of the CR1 visa which takes a bit longer, costs a bit more but requires very little contact with Homeland Security or USCIS again when back in the US. If there is no hurry most tend to seek a CR1 visa as they only want to deal with red-tape once. An an example you wife will be able to work in the US once she arrives without seeking any permission like you would with a K3 visa. Speak to an attorney in Thailand about your options.
How Long Does the K3 Visa Take?
As stated above that there are many factors. If there are errors or not or delays in finding all the documents in Thailand such as immunization records. It also depends on how long USCIS takes to process the documents when the process starts. Delays are mainly due to errors of missing documents. Overall you would be looking at about 8 months for the visa to be approved.
If you have any further questions about a US Visa in Thailand then search this website for more information or contact an immigration lawyer in Thailand for more details.