USCIS I-129F Processing Time
California Service Center — Receipt # WAC
Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé(e), is the first step in obtaining a K-1 visa for your fiancé(e) and their children (K-2) or a K-3 visa for your spouse and their children (K-4). The current processing time for Form I-129F is about 11 months. However, our forecasts indicate that newly filed I-129F applications can expect a 6-month processing time. To see your personalized forecast, try Ultimate Tracker - our proprietary prediction algorithm.
All I-129F applications are processed at the California Service Center (receipt numbers starting with "WAC") no matter where you mailed your form. You can read more about I-129F service centers in our post.
All cases start in the Case Received status. Approximately 6% of applications get Rejected within a few weeks due to improper filing. Currently, after waiting about 11 months, 65% of cases get directly Approved and a small minority of them (3%) get directly Denied. The rest of the applications receive a Request for Evidence. Once USCIS receives the additional evidence from the applicant, their status changes to Request for Evidence Received. After that, about 18% of cases get Approved, while 8% get Denied, usually within a few weeks.
To learn more about each status, visit our FAQ page.
What does the current case backlog look like?
This graph shows the status of all I-129F cases received by USCIS in the last 2 years.
The backlog helps us understand the big picture. For example, we can see that USCIS generally processes cases in the order they were received.
Newer cases are shown on the right side of the graph. They mostly have the Case Received status. We can also see that incorrectly filed forms are usually Rejected by USCIS soon after they are received. On the other side of the graph, the old cases have mostly all been processed - either Approved, Denied, or Rejected.
Near the middle of the graph, you see that USCIS is actively working on cases - turning months from light blues into greens and yellows. Once USCIS starts working on a month, many cases are quickly Approved, while others take longer due to a variety of reasons, such as a Request for Evidence (see our post about RFEs).
While the backlog chart is a rich source of data, it isn't able to answer all questions. To see how fast USCIS is processing cases and to see exactly what month they are working on, we need to look at the graphs below.
How many cases is USCIS processing?
USCIS processing rate greatly increased beginning in January 2023. The processing rate now appears to be leveling off at around 250 cases per working day (on average). The California Service Center receives around 3500 to 4000 I-129F cases per month, but is processing over 5000 cases each month. At this rate, the backlog will continue to decrease and wait times will continue to improve.