CR1 Application Process
This is the application process for the CR1 Visa in Thailand. See the requirements for the CR1 Visa and also the overview of a CR1 Visa. Speak to a US immigration lawyer in Thailand for more information and assistance.
Step 1: Filing an I-130 Petition
To start the CR-1 visa application process, fill out and submit Form I-130, which is also known as a “Petition for an Alien Relative.” When you file the I-130 you will need to prove you are a U.S. citizen, and attach a copy of your marriage certificate and passport-size photos of both you and your spouse.
You also need to attach evidence that shows your marriage is legitimate, such as documents that show you share bank accounts or property, a lease showing you live together, or affidavits from friends confirming your marriage is heartfelt. If either you or your spouse was previously married, you have to attach a divorce decree, annulment, or death decree to show that you were free to enter your present marriage.
Send the I-130 petition and supporting documents to the U.S. Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS) Lockbox in Chicago for processing. Or if you are living in Thailand, you may file the I-130 at the USCIS with the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok. Make sure you keep copies of all the documents you send with the I-130 because you will need them later in the visa application process. When USCIS receives your I-130 they will send you Form I-797 confirming that they are processing your petition.
Step 2: Processing at the National Visa Center (NVC)
Once USCIS processes and approves your I-130 petition it will be forwarded to the National Visa Center (NVC) for further processing. The National Visa Center will send you an instruction packet with visa application forms. Follow the instructions carefully. Along with the completed application, your spouse will need to provide a copy of their passport, 2 passport photos, certified copies of birth and marriage certificates, a police certification certificate from anywhere your spouse has lived, and any military service records. You will have to file the Form I-864 Affidavit of Support to prove that you meet the income requirement. The National Visa Center will also collect visa application fees.
Step 3: Interview and Medical Exam
When your application is complete, the National Center will schedule an interview at the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok. Before the interview the visa applicant must complete a medical examination, which can be conducted at designated locations in Bangkok and Chiang Mai.
The final step in the CR-1 visa application process is an interview with a visa officer at the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok. This can take several hours. The visa officer will review the documentation, ensure that your spouse is eligible for a visa, and attempt to confirm that the marriage is sincere. If the visa is approved, it should be available about two business days after the interview.
After You Arrive in the U.S.
Once your Thai spouse enters the United States on a CR-1 visa they will be sent a conditional green card, which is only valid for two years. Remember to apply to remove the conditions within 90 days before the green card’s expiration, or your wife will have to leave the U.S. and start the immigration process over from the beginning!
About the Author (Author Profile)
Siam Legal is a full service law firm but it has an extensive range of immigration, corporate, and real estate experience accessible to clients both domestically and internationally. It has offices strategically located throughout the major cities in Thailand including Chiang Mai, Pattaya, Hua Hin, Samui and Phuket along with international representative offices in Australia, London and Las Vegas.