The E2 Visa is the “Treaty Investor” visa that is available for 30+ countries around the world which have treaty agreements with the United States.
Individuals from these countries can open up offices or practices in the United States, but they need to invest a substantial amount of money in the country in order to do so.
Key Considerations for E2 Visa
As a guideline, the basic amount of money invested, which the US Consulates will consider sufficient is around US$100,000. USCIS will sometimes accept around US$50,000. We like to use the former amount ($100k) to be safe.
In any case, that money can be invested into a company, or used as investment to create a new company.
Important Note: You cannot create a job solely for the individual E2 visa applicant, so there must be other people employed by the this company. We believe that the minimum number of employees is between 3 and 5. The business must have its own facility or premises, so the E2 visa holder cannot simply work from their house.
The E2 can be a fantastic visa! Although it is a non-immigrant visa, meaning it is a temporary visa, it can be extended as long as the company is viable (i.e. it continues to produce goods or services).
The E2 also allows the visa holder to bring their spouse and family into the United States. The spouse may also work in the US under a EAD card (“Employment Authorization Document”) and also other people who are essential to the company (although they must come from the same country as the E2 Visa applicant).
E2 Visa Requirements
- Applicant must be a national of a country that the U.S. has executed and maintains a treaty (not a requirement for family members).
- Must have either invested or be in act of investing a “substantial” amount of capital in a U.S. business. Substantial is defined as large in relation to total cost of establishing or purchasing the enterprise, or sufficient to ensure treaty investor’s financial commitment to success and likelihood trader will develop the enterprise. The lower the cost of the enterprise, the higher the proportional investment must be to be considered substantial.
- Investment means the treaty investor is placing capital at risk of loss, including funds or other assets. Investor must show funds have not been obtained directly or indirectly from criminal activity.
- Be seeking to enter U.S. solely to develop and direct the investment enterprise. This is demonstrated through at least 50% ownership or possession of operational control via a managerial position or other corporate device.
- Investment may not be “marginal. ” This is an enterprise that doesn’t have the present or future capacity to generate income to provide minimal living for the treaty investor and family. Time frame to show capacity is 5 years.
Requirements of E2 “Employee of Treaty Investor”
- Be same nationality of the principal employer (who must be national of treaty country).
- Meet definition of “employee” under relevant law.
- Be engaging in supervisory or executive capacity, or have relevant special qualifications.
Additional E2 Visa Terms
Period of Stay – up to two years. Extensions may be granted in increments of two years, with no maximum number of extensions limit.
Family members – includes spouses or children under 21 years. Nationality need not be the same. Spouses may be approved for work.
Travel abroad – travel is permitted for the treaty trader or employee, and an automatic 2-year extension granted upon re-admission. This new readmission period will not be granted automatically to family members, who should carefully monitor the period of stay and apply for extension to remain in U.S. lawfully.
Trust Velie Law With Your E2 Visa Application
If your E2 Visa Application is important to you, here are four great reasons why you should speak to Velie Law Firm today.
- The care we put into all our applications gives us the highest success rates in the industry.
- Plus you get our “Success Guarantee” — if your first application is not successful, we’ll review and resubmit at no cost.
- You’ll deal directly with our in-house attorneys (no affiliates).
- Our services are flat-rate. You won’t pay one penny more!
* Our approval rate displayed is the average for calendar year 2014. Any result Velie Law Firm might have achieved on behalf of one client in one matter does not necessarily indicate similar results can be obtained for other clients.