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Fiance & Marriage Visas: A Couple's Guide to U.S. Immigration [Paperback]

Ilona Bray J.D.
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Fiance and Marriage Visas: A Couple's Guide to US Immigration (Fiance & Marriage Visas) Fiance and Marriage Visas: A Couple's Guide to US Immigration (Fiance & Marriage Visas) 4.5 out of 5 stars (27)
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Book Description

September 2, 2010 1413312543 978-1413312546 6
Obtain a visa and stay with your spouse in the U.S.

You're engaged or married to a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, and all you want is the right to be together in the U.S. Should be easy, right? It's not. Information can be hard to find, the government bureaucracy isn't helpful, delays are inevitable. Worst of all, there wasn't an easy-to-use guide through the process -- until now.

Fiancé & Marriage Visas makes obtaining a visa and green card as painless as possible. It helps you decide the fastest and best application strategy for you, whether you are married or unmarried, living in the U.S. or overseas.

With this friendly, comprehensive book, you can:

  • understand the immigration process
  • make your way through the bureaucracy
  • prepare for meetings with U.S. officials
  • learn how to prove your marriage is real
  • deal with the two-year testing period

    Plus, Fiancé & Marriage Visas gives you helpful advice on protecting and renewing your green-card status. It also provides samples of essential forms, and shows you how to find them online.

    The 6th edition is completely updated throughout, covering the latest fees, sponsorship requirements and changes to the application process. It directs you to the most current forms online, and provides up-to-date sample forms to guide you.

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    Editorial Reviews

    About the Author

    Bray is an author and legal editor at Nolo, specializing in real estate, immigration law, and nonprofit fundraising. She is co-author of Nolo's Essential Guide to Buying Your First Home and also edits a number of Nolo's small business books. Bray's working background includes solo practice, nonprofit, and corporate stints, as well as long periods of volunteering, including an internship at Amnesty International's main legal office in London. She received her law degree and a Masters degree in East Asian (Chinese) Studies from the University of Washington.

    Product Details

    • Paperback: 512 pages
    • Publisher: NOLO; 6 edition (September 2, 2010)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 1413312543
    • ISBN-13: 978-1413312546
    • Product Dimensions: 10.9 x 8.4 x 1 inches
    • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
    • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #646,590 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
    Update: Now that I have finally finished getting my fiancee here from the Philippines, I can say that this book is basically somewhat useful. However, it is not good enough to be successful with this book alone. Although this is a thick book with lots of forms and examples, it is actually too generalized and tries to cover every possible scenario. In doing so, the layout is confusing and inadequate for any specific case. My situation was very straightforward. I am widowed and my fiancee has never been married and never had any children. I have two children who are fully grown. So I don't think my situation could be any simpler. Thankfully I hired a consultant and even he wasn't really up to date on everything. A fiancee visa is too long a process to make even the slightest of mistakes or you could end up starting over. There are just too many details that are completely missing in this book - things like the medical exam and how to properly prepare for the make it or break it embassy interview.

    From the day that my fiancee visa was received by the Department of Homeland security until the day she arrived was exactly 40 weeks to the day. There was not a single day of delay. It just takes a long time to get processed. If I had depended solely on this book, I think I would still be waiting for the K1 visa to be approved. You can try to do this cheaply and you might be successful, but I strongly believe most people would end up making too many mistakes and providing inadequate information and mess up their application. A USA based consultant will cost about $1000 to get you from the beginning through the Adjustment of Status phase. I am just about at the point of getting married now. The paperwork for the Adjustment of Status is even more than the fiancee visa.
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    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Use this book as an overview only !!! December 8, 2010
    Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
    I am rewriting the short and naiive review I originally posted here. I am in mid-process of working a K-1 Fiance Visa and I want to make it clear that this book is nothing more than an OVERVIEW of what you will go through to do this. The procedures and requirements change constantly, as well as the forms. I know the author of this book has great knowledge of the process, but you simply cannot print something on a volatile subject like immigration and expect it to still be valid the next year.

    The book IS well-written and fairly easy to understand, but therein lies the caveat. It certainly lulled me into a sense of simplicity and I did not prepare much of what was needed until the very week I had planned to submit the initial petition form. There is MUCH required and it takes intense study and preparation.

    I'd say, if you are planning to do any of the things this book covers, buy it or look for it at the library. BUT please please please find the Visa Journey website very early in your preparation. Visa Journey is an organization of people just like you and me, who are attempting or have already succeeded or failed to win a Visa for themselves or someone else. There is so much information on this site that it will take many many hours to satisfy yourself that you've seen it all and are ready to begin your process.

    And no matter what you decide to do, the very best of luck to you!
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    4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible resource September 30, 2010
    I am happy to report that we are approved. Immigration seems like an obstacle that is too big to overcome. My boyfriend and I were miserable living in two different countries. He proposed and we consulted a lawyer. With a little input from them, and a cost estimate of what it would cost for them to help, we decided to buy the book and figure it out ourselves.

    I am so glad I understood the process before we went through it. We were able to figure out where to get married, how to file, how long he would be without a job, etc. We turned our application in in July. Received his work permit 2 months later, and had our appointment and approval within 4 months from turning in our application.

    Anyone who is engaged or involved in an overseas relationship considering a true future should buy this book. Getting all the forms in order was by no means a simple process, but with a lot of dedication and this book to guide you- it is possible to do this without a lawyer.

    Long distance relationships can work :)
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    6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely Helpful! November 15, 2011
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    My husband and I couldn`t afford to have an attorney help us on my green card process so we decided to buy this book and it was the smartest decision ever! If you read it carefully and do exactly as they say, you won`t have any problems at all.
    After 5 months after applying, I had my green card in my hands...and we had everything we needed at the interview so we didn`t go through any stress!
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    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars A guide to a confusing, complicated process December 5, 2010
    Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
    "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free" and we will basically deny them entry.

    I don't think most Americans are aware of how terribly complicated, confusing and basically impossible it is to immigrate into the country legally. The fact that there is a book nearly 500 pages thick just talking about the process of a non-American marrying an American and immigrating to America ought to give you some idea of just how complicated it has become.

    Basically, if you want to marry a non-American citizen, you'll need a lawyer, or a good book, maybe both (but it's cheaper to start with the book).

    The book explains everything and goes through a lot of scenarios -- what visa is your significant other currently using, if any? Should you get a Fiance Visa, and what is that, exactly? What do the forms look like and how do you fill them out? Just like a guide for doing tax forms, this book shows you the documents you may need to use and tells you, line by line, how to fill them out.

    I would not attempt the process at all without at LEAST a book like this. If you mess up the process, it can become a real problem. The government doesn't do anything fast, but time limits for visas tend to be short and by the time you hear back that your application was wrong, you could be looking at an impossible deadline to fix it.

    Really, I think people should check out a book like this just to understand some of our immigration system. Far from being "overrun by immigrants", America's system is slow, restrictive, confusing and in places subject to whims of individuals. You're going to need a lot more information of a lot better reliability than you'll get through Google or government websites.

    Also note that if you get this book, look inside for the "Legal Updates" section. They offer free updates online if something changes in the law after the book goes to print.
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    1.0 out of 5 stars No useful information
    All information in the book can be googled. The pages are are mostly composed of blank USCIS documents and pre filled ones. Very general information.
    Published 14 months ago by Maxim
    5.0 out of 5 stars Worked Perfectly
    I purchased this book to guide me through applying for a change of status for my wife, who is from Japan. The instructions were simple and easy to follow. Read more
    Published 21 months ago by Maurynca
    5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Resource
    This was purchased after reseaching online reviews. It was a bit hard to find without the search term 'visa'. Read more
    Published on January 20, 2012 by Biotexts2
    5.0 out of 5 stars I'm thankful for this book
    I met with many lawyers before deciding that I could adjust my status on my own. All lawyers said my case was pretty simple and that I would not have any issues, so I wondered why... Read more
    Published on September 20, 2011 by Amazon Customer
    4.0 out of 5 stars A good foundation
    Fiance & Marriage Visas: A Couple's Guide to U.S. Immigration is a comprehensive guide to immigration via a fiance/marriage visa. Read more
    Published on September 14, 2011 by gotta run now
    5.0 out of 5 stars Everything you need in one handy volume
    With the caveat that one should always check the government website for updated info ... this is a terrific volume of what you need to know to accomplish a fiance or spouse visa... Read more
    Published on March 21, 2011 by Just Me
    4.0 out of 5 stars A great, helpful do it yourself guide to marriage based visas
    "Fiance and Marriage Visas" is a great immigration guide by Ilona Bray. Her book is very user friendly and informative. Read more
    Published on February 27, 2011 by K G R
    4.0 out of 5 stars Lawyer-free immigration!
    In the beginning of this book the authors (who are immigration attorneys) state that their purpose in writing this guide was to make it possible for couples to navigate the often... Read more
    Published on November 18, 2010 by Timothy B. Riley
    5.0 out of 5 stars Nolo = Perfection!
    This book is a more defined and focused version of Nolo's "How To Get A Green card" and deals exclusively on immigration for foreign citizen spouses or intended spouses of US... Read more
    Published on October 23, 2010 by J. Cipriani
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