Work permits and fiancee visas
K-1 fiancees who enter the U.S. are permitted to work incident to their K-1 status. This requires submitting an application for a work permit (aka, “employment authorization document”) to the USCIS. The problem with this process is that the USCIS takes 90 days, sometimes even longer, to review the work permit application and manufacture the work permit. Since the K-1 is permitted to hold K-1 status for only 90 days in the U.S., the foreign fiancee cannot realistically obtain work authorization during the period he/she is in K-1 status.
The American Immigration Lawyers Association has pointed out this difficulty to the USCIS at a recent CBP meeting. Unfortunately, the response from the USCIS was only that the work permit application must be completed and submitted for the K-1 to receive work authorization. Stay tuned for any developments with this difficulty. Hopefully the USCIS will recognize the position it puts applicants in and provide an alternative, faster option to receive authorization to work.