K-1 Visa Joint Sponsor Guide

A critical step in securing a K-1 fiancé(e) visa is proving that you, as the U.S. citizen sponsor, have the financial means to support your partner when they arrive in the United States. However, if your income falls short of the government’s requirements, don’t despair! There’s another option available to you: enlisting a joint sponsor or co-sponsor on your K-1 visa application.

A co-sponsor can help you meet the financial threshold and increase the chances of a successful visa approval. But who can be a co-sponsor? What are their responsibilities? And how does this impact the K-1 visa process?

Please read our guide to K1 visa co-sponsoring to learn everything you need to know about this important aspect of the K-1 visa journey. We’ll walk you through the requirements, the process, and the potential benefits of co-sponsorship, empowering you to make informed decisions and pave the way for a successful visa application for your fiancé(e).

What Are the K-1 Visa Sponsorship Requirements?

To be eligible for a K-1 visa, your household revenue must be at least 125% of the federal poverty line. This figure is calculated based on the number of people in your household, including yourself, your dependents, relatives living with you, and your fiancé(e).

Your income must be from a stable source, such as employment, retirement benefits, or government assistance. Unemployment benefits do not qualify. You can also use assets like stocks, bonds, or property as long as they can be converted to cash within a year without causing financial hardship.

How to Boost Your K-1 Visa Income by Including Household Members

If your individual income falls short of the K-1 visa requirement, you can include the financial resources of certain household members to meet the threshold. This includes their income and assets. Let’s see who qualifies:

  • They must be related to you (birth, marriage, or adoption).
  • They must have been listed as your dependent on your most recent tax return OR have lived with you for six months.

How to include their income:

  • They must complete Form I-864A, Contract Between Sponsor and Household Member. This form confirms their willingness to contribute income to support your fiancé(e).

By combining financial resources with qualifying household members, you increase your chances of meeting the income requirement for the K-1 visa. This strategy can be beneficial if your individual income is slightly below the threshold.

When a Joint Sponsor May Be Needed for Your K-1 Visa

Do you and your fiancé meet the minimum income requirement for your household size? This is a crucial question when applying for a K-1 visa. You can include a joint sponsor in your application if your combined income doesn’t meet the threshold (the current K1 visa income requirements are $20,440 for a two-person household in 2024).

This person would then take on the financial responsibility of supporting your fiancé(e) in the U.S. You can find the most up-to-date income requirements online or by working with an immigration attorney.

What Is a K-1 Visa Co-sponsorship, and Who Can Be a Joint Sponsor?

As you can see, if your income doesn’t quite meet the standards set by the U.S. government for sponsoring your fiancé(e)’s K-1 visa, you can enlist the help of a co-sponsor. This individual, sometimes called a joint sponsor, is crucial in demonstrating that your fiancé(e) will be financially supported while living in the U.S.

A co-sponsor can be anyone, even someone outside your family or social circle, as long as they meet specific requirements.

K1 Visa Co-Sponsor Requirements

A joint sponsor must meet the exact income requirements as you, the primary sponsor, and be a U.S. citizen or LPR. Here are all the details:

  • Financial standing: The co-sponsor must meet or exceed the income requirements set by the government for the K-1 visa. This ensures they can adequately financially support your fiancé(e).
  • Legal status and residency: They must be U.S. citizens or green card holders.
  • Age: They must be at least 18 years old.
  • Residence: They must currently live in the United States.

K1 Visa Co-Sponsor Responsibilities

The co-sponsor is legally responsible for financially supporting your fiancé(e), even if your relationship ends. This obligation typically lasts until your fiancé(e) becomes a U.S. citizen, can support themselves, or has worked for 40 qualifying quarters (usually about ten years).

By understanding the role and requirements of a co-sponsor, you can confidently explore this option to strengthen your K-1 visa application. Remember, a co-sponsor can be a friend, relative, or even a third party willing to support your journey toward a life together in the U.S.

How to Become a Co-sponsor for a K-1 Visa Application: Step-by-step Guide

As a U.S. citizen sponsor of a K-1 visa, demonstrating your financial capability to support your fiancé(e) is crucial in the visa process. This is typically done through Form I-134, a legally binding document that assures the U.S. government that your fiancé(e) won’t become a financial burden after arriving here. If your income isn’t insufficient, the joint sponsor can also complete a separate Form I-134 to show their commitment to support your fiancé(e) financially.

To become a joint sponsor for a K-1 visa, the other person must fill out and submit a separate Form I-134, also known as the Declaration of Financial Support. This form is crucial as it demonstrates the commitment to financially support the K-1 visa applicant while they are in the United States.

Form I-134 requires detailed information about the joint sponsor. This includes personal details, Social Security number, and proof of their U.S. citizenship or permanent resident status. It also asks about their employment, financial assets, and income. The joint sponsor must also attach supporting documents to prove the accuracy of their information.

Completing and submitting Form I-134 means the K1 co-sponsor legally promises the U.S. government that they will financially support the K-1 visa holder if needed. This reassures the government that the applicant will not become a financial burden on the country.

IMPORTANT! Starting January 29, 2024, everyone must use the November 9, 2023 edition of Form I-134. Older versions will not be accepted, so double-check before you file!

K-1 Visa Joint Sponsorship: Your Questions Answered

Planning to ask a co-sponsor to financially support your fiancé(e) for a K-1 visa? We understand you might have questions about the process. That’s why we’ve compiled this FAQ section, drawing on our experience helping countless couples navigate the complexities of K-1 visa sponsorship and joint sponsorship.

Below, you’ll find clear and concise answers to our clients’ most common questions. Whether you’re unsure about income requirements, the role of a co-sponsor, or the specific documents needed, we’ve got you covered.

What is a K-1 visa co-sponsor?

A K-1 visa co-sponsor (joint sponsor) is a U.S. citizen or green card holder who agrees to financially support your fiancé(e) while they are in the United States. They act as a backup financial resource, demonstrating to the U.S. government that your fiancé(e) will be taken care of financially, even if your income doesn’t meet the minimum requirement.

The co-sponsor must meet the exact income requirements as the primary sponsor and is legally obligated to provide financial support until the K-1 holder becomes a U.S. citizen, can support themselves, or has worked for a certain period in the U.S.

If you’re sponsoring a relative for a K-1 fiancé(e) visa, K-3 spouse visa, or a K-2 child visa, you won’t need to submit an Affidavit of Support (Form I-864) when you initially file the Petition for Alien Fiancé(e) (Form I-129F).

The Affidavit of Support is a legal document demonstrating your financial commitment to support your relative. It becomes necessary later in the process when your fiancé(e), spouse, or child applies for a green card after they arrive in the United States.

So, rest assured that you don’t need to worry about the Affidavit of Support immediately. Focus on preparing Form I-129F and gathering the necessary evidence to support your petition.

Unfortunately, no. Joint sponsors are not currently allowed to apply for K-1 visas where the fiancé(e) is from the Philippines or Thailand. These countries have specific rules and regulations regarding K-1 visa sponsorship.

If you’re unsure whether you can include a joint sponsor in your case, you must contact the U.S. Embassy or consulate where your fiancé(e) will apply. They are the ones most able to offer the most accurate and up-to-date information based on your circumstances.

For 2024, the minimum income requirement for a single person sponsoring a fiancé(e) on a K-1 visa is $20,440. This means your annual income must be equal to or greater than this amount to demonstrate your ability to financially support your fiancé(e) while they are in the U.S. This is calculated based on the Federal Poverty Guidelines, which are updated annually. The same is valid for the co-sponsor.

Need Help with Your K-1 Visa (Co)Sponsorship Application? We're Here to Guide You!

Our team of experienced immigration experts at ImmigrationDirect is here to simplify the K1 visa process and ensure a smooth path to bringing your loved one to the U.S. Whether you need assistance with income requirements, co-sponsorship, or any other aspect of the K-1 visa or the I-129F application, we offer personalized guidance and support tailored to your unique situation. Contact us today for a consultation, and let us help you achieve your dreams of a life together in the United States!

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