90 Day Fiance is a reality show well known for its intense drama. The popularity and huge success of the reality show have resulted in spin-offs such as 90 Day Fiancé: Happily Ever After?, 90 Day Fiancé: What Now?, 90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days, and 90 Day Fiancé: The Other Way. The entire concept revolves around the idea of an American falling in love with a foreigner. The United States Government issues a K1 visa to the foreign partner. The validity of the visa is for 90 days. Engaged couples have to get married within this duration to avoid an expiration of the visa.
Long distance relationships are as it is a little hard to maintain. Moreover, K1 visa rules don’t make things easier. Plus, TLC has its own set of rules and contracts that the couples on 90 Day Fiance have to abide by. On that note, let us take a look at 15 rules that are mandatory for all 90 Day Fiance couples to follow.
1. Being Okay With Scenes That Are Scripted
The essence of a successful reality show lies behind the drama and stir it can create among the audience. Of course, most of the moments indeed are real, but the edits and retakes along with some scripted content are a part of the deal. For instance, Chris, Toby’s best friend suggested his fiance offered him massages as a thank you for letting them stay with them. However, later, Chris’s wife posted on Facebook that the entire scenario was scripted. The producers clearly state that if they want to remain on the show, they have to be okay with retakes and scripted scenes.
” Yes, the scene where Chris asked for a message was scripted. The producers instructed him accordingly. While we were sitting at the table, they fed us the dialogues, she said. Several other cast members also mentioned the same.
2. Obtaining Citizenship Is The Responsibility Of The Foreign Partner
The show doesn’t simplify the immigration process in any way. Becoming a US citizen is the sole responsibility of the foreign partner.
3. Couples Have To Take Care Of Their Visa Applications
The application process of the K1 visa is quite lengthy. The foreign partners have to take care of their own visa approval. It takes several months to process once you have had all the forms and evidence in place. It is mandatory to prove that the couple has met in person at least once in two years from filming the show.
According to TLC, “Apart from forms, there has to be a passport, police certificate issued from the country of that person’s residence, financial support proof and evidence of the relationship with your US partner. The processing time is in months.”
4. Passing TLCs Background Check
Despite their K1 visa approval, TLC performs their own background check to eliminate any contestants with a negative background.
5. The Partners Have To Maintain Their Marriage
TLC boasts that only three out of 25 couples have been divorced. This is a pretty good success rate for the show. There is a rule for the foreign partner to stay in a marital union with their American partner for at least 3 years before the reexamination of their application. If they fail to do that, they risk getting deported. Before applying for citizenship, the person has to hold a green card for at least 3 years.
6. Partners Must Have Seen One Another In The Last 2 Years
Partners should not just meet for the first time on the show. They should have met before, at least in a time frame of 2 years till filming.
7. ’90 Day Fiance’ Couples Don’t Have A Say In Their Portrayal
The producers can edit the scenes as per their choice. The couples are not allowed to sue the producers or the channel even if they are not satisfied with how they have been portrayed on the show. Nikki and Mark from the third season of 90 Day Fiance had an issue in the way TLC portrayed them on the show. They made attempts to sue Discovery Communications, the parent company of TLC. However, they dismissed the case as the couple had already signed a contract stating that the producers can edit all the footage according to their own will. This is a contract every 90 Day Fiance couple has to sign.
8. It Is Mandatory To Marry Within 3 Months
If the couple is unable to tie their nuptials, the foreign partner will be deported. For instance, Azan’s visa was declined and he wasn’t able to move in with Nicole. The K1 visa expires after 9 months. Over the past few years, rejection rates have declined steadily.
9. A Detailed Interview Is Mandatory
The foreigner has to go to their respective embassies for a detailed interview. They are required to prove that they are legitimate with the help of pictures, videos and other pieces of evidence. The interviewer has the right to ask some questions about the relationship, the wedding plans and general background of the foreigner. Some of the questions include whether one of the partners have been arrested. The interviewer can also ask the best thing the applicant likes about their fiance. One of the most common questions includes how many times the couple has met in person.
10. The Foreigner Has To Leave If They Don’t Stay Married
If the couple isn’t able to sustain their marriage for two years, the government will take away the PR status. Just getting married to the American is not enough. This rule is due to the fact that most foreigners adopt foul methods to attain a green card. Getting married to an American seems like the easy way out.
11. The Relationship Has To Be Real
Before a couple appears on the show, they have to prove that they are in a real relationship beforehand. Most fans believe that the producers bring together couples to create the scenes. On the contrary, they have to prove that they are in a serious relationship.
According to Anfisa Nava, 90 Day Fiance Season 4 contestant, “The producers don’t just bring together the couples for the sake of filming. The partners know each other at such a level that they know that they want to marry each other.” The producer Matt Sharp said that they don’t bring together couples to feature them on the show. All the partners found each other and the show has no role in them knowing each other for the first time.”
12. Only The American Partner Is Paid
Wealth and fame are the two presents that come with a reality show. Most of the reality TV stars have even crossed the $100,000 mark with their reality show income. The foreigners aren’t legally permitted to work without a green card. Thus, only the American partner receives $ 1000 per episode and $ 2500 for the Tell-All. Even though this rule might seem unfair, but it is based on a legal viewpoint.
13. Women Are Supposed To Follow A Seating Position
If you are an avid watcher of the show, you must have noticed that the women are seated in a particular position. Their knees touch one another and are raised up to their chest. Apparently, TLC has made this rule for the female contestants to obey. Anfisa Nava mentioned that she feels really uncomfortable with the seating position. She hates it.
14. The Rule For K1 Visa and The Minimum Income
The US petitioner has to meet the requirements for the minimum income of the K1 visa won’t be approved. The American has to be sufficiently earning to sponsor their significant other. If they are not in a position to fulfil this criterion, their foreign significant other might not get to stay with them. For instance, Nicole had to ask her father to co-sponsor Azan as she did not meet the minimum income criteria.
15. Flawed People Making Up The Cast
’90 Day Fiance’ producers love people who are flawed to be on their show. A good rule is for contestants to highlight their weaknesses during their interview. The producers think that people who are flawed have the potential to create more drama on the show. Of course, this is a measure the channel takes to make sure the TRP doesn’t decline. Along with 90 Day Fiance, this rule applies to the entire reality television industry.
Some of these rules are based on the guidelines for the K1 visa and American citizenship. On the other hand, there are some which might seem a bit off-putting to the viewers. After all, a reality show shouldn’t lose its reality factor, right? Should the couples comply with all the requirements TLC asks them to fulfil? Or should they collectively raise their voice against some unreasonable terms and conditions? Which of these rules do you think are unfair? Which rule surprises you the most? Let us know in the comments below.