Obtaining an American visa for a foreign loved one can be a somewhat cumbersome process, particularly where the American Citizen spouse or fiance is in the United States and unable to deal with the day-to-day demands involved with obtaining a US visa. Therefore, some explanation is helpful to those interested in the US Immigration process and unaccustomed to its complexities.
When it comes time to process a visa application through the United States Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand it is necessary to compile a relatively large assortment of forms. This requirement is confusing in some cases because many people in the USA mistakenly believe that the initial application submission is the only time that forms must be filed for the acquisition of a United States visa. In reality, the United States Embassy requires a great many forms of its own.
A possible explanation for what would seem to be a superfluous system is the fact that the US Consular posts are supervised by the Department of State while USCIS is under the authority of the Department of Homeland Security. These two bureaucracies handle different aspects of the Immigration process. With regard to Embassy processing, the Consular Section first receives the case from the National Visa Center (NVC). Upon receiving the petition, the Consular staff will notify the prospective beneficiary that the visa application process can begin within the notification will be an explanation of the forms necessary to get the visa application approved.
For the K1 fiance visa, these forms generally include forms like the DS-156 and 157 Although this is not an exhaustive list and many Embassies have different protocol for processing visas so extensive research may be required. The “DS” in front of the numbers denotes that the forms are issued by the Department of State, Immigration forms can be discerned by their use of the initial “I” before the specified number.
After compiling all of the necessary forms the applicant must send in the fully compiled appointment request packet, commonly referred to as packet 3. After receipt of this packet and the completed forms, the Embassy will set the interview appointment and the applicant will need to arrive prepared to demonstrate the bona fide nature of the relationship upon which the visa is being issued. If approved, the applicant generally must return to the Embassy within a few days to pick up their passport with the visa in it. The visa conferee must enter the USA on the visa within a 6 month period or else the visa will expire.