When people visit me in my Boston immigration law office, I encourage anyone who is eligible to apply for the Department of State’s Diversity Visa lottery. Yesterday, the Department of State’ announced the winners of the 2010 Diversity Visa lottery. Those who already applied for the DV Lottery can check online here to see whether they were lucky enough to be selected to receive one of the 50,000 visas granted each year.
But being selected does not mean that you will automatically get a green card and become a permanent resident. What it does mean is that you will be eligible to go through a complex immigration process on the basis of being selected for the DV Lottery.
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The K3 visa and the K-4 visa are completely useless, particularly for Massachusetts residents. I say this with confidence as an immigration lawyer in Boston with extensive experience in marriage-based immigration. I’ve prepared countless green card cases at consular posts around the world. To explain why I believe filing a K-3 or a K-4 visa is a waste of time and money, let me first provide some background information on the K-3 and K-4 visas.
The K-3 visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows the spouse of a U.S. citizen to enter the U.S. while an immigration petition (Form I-130) is pending with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS; the immigration agency formerly known as the INS). The I-130 is a petition that U.S. citizens with foreign spouses must have approved in order for their foreign spouse to be eligible for an immigrant visa in the United States. The K-4 visa is available for the children (unmarried and under 21) of a K-3 visa holder. Ideally, a U.S. citizen would submit the I-130, get the receipt notice shortly thereafter, and then apply for a K-3 and/or K-4 visa so the non-american citizen spouse and/or children could reside in the U.S. while the I-130 is pending.
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