Applying for a K3 is an easy and *FAST* process vs. the I-130. To
apply for the K3, you need to have received the first Notice of Action
from the BCIS on the I-130 and currently be awaiting a decision on the
If the K3 is approved, your wife WILL be able to move to the US and
file for Adjustment of Status in the US. It's a little more time
consuming to do a K3/AOS/EAD (Employment Authorization) vs the I-130,
but, remember: the two of you are together while the slow wheels of
beauracracy grind away.
Incidently, if this is a simply immigration situation (i.e. you are
married already to your wife, you've lived together before, there's
nothing 'strange' about your situation), using a lawyer is just going
to cost you more money. The forms are easy to fill out, and clear in
their directions. I've done everything myself--and didn't even get a
single request for evidence through the entire process. Just follow
the directions carefully and triple check what you're sending into the
BCIS and later the NVC (National Visa Center).
You can also get support from http://www.britishexpats.com - a site
that has lots of info on marriage-based immigration petitions.
So, bottom line: file the K3, and you'll probably be together in a few
months max. Wait for the I-130, and it'll take much longer than that.
HOWEVER, with the I-130 approved, there's no more paperwork to do
until she wants to become a citizen; with the K3, there's still more
paperwork to do.
Hope this clears up your concerns. If any part of this answer isn't
clear, please ask for clarification prior to rating and closing this
No searches were performed for this answer: all information was
knowledge I already had. I've been dealing with this personally for a
few years now.