You cannot petition for your fiance to enter the United States on the K-1 visa unless you are a US citizen. Unless he/she is able to come sooner under some other status, such as a student visa, the only solution would be for you to travel to another country to marry your fiance, and then petition for him or her as your spouse upon your return. At the moment, there is a wait of a couple of years for this category. Please note that, if you naturalize during this waiting period, your petition can be upgraded. Also realize that your partner may have difficulty receiving a temporary visa of any type if the consular officers become aware that there is a US-based fiance.
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You are correct, only a US citizen can petition for a fiancé. More than likely the people you speak of came through some other means of which you are unaware
Samuel Ouya Maina, Esq. 415.391.6612 email@example.com Law Offices of S. Ouya Maina, PC 332 Pine Street, Suite 707 San Francisco, CA 94104
Your fiance may be eligible for a student, employment, or investment based visa. You may file an immigrant visa petition for her, but there will be a significant wait time. Hopefully you will qualify for US citizenship shortly.
As the other lawyers correctly pointed out, the 'several' people used something other than fiancee visas ... possibly tourist, possibly student.
Also, normally when one uses the word 'partner' they are talking about a same-sex life-partner ... which, unfortunately the US government won't recognize ... even if they get legally married.
PROFESSOR OF IMMIGRATION LAW for over 10 years -- This blog posting is offered for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Also, keep in mind that this is an INTERNET BLOG. You should not rely on anything you read here to make decisions which impact on your life. Meet with an attorney, via Skype, or in person, to obtain competent personal and professional guidance.
Permanent resident's cannot file fiance petitions. Perhaps your fiance qualifies for some other type of visa to come to the U.S.
The above is intended only as general information, and does not constitute legal advice. You must speak with an attorney to discuss your individual case.