E-2 Visa and US Investor Visa
The E-2 Visa allows a foreign national of a treaty country to be admitted to the United States when investing a ‘substantial’ amount of capital into a U.S. business, including franchises, for up to five years, with an unlimited amount of extensions.
Are you interested in owning a business in the United States?
Would you like to also bring your family here while you manage that business?
One of the nonimmigration options available to applicants with citizenship in certain countries is the E-2 treaty visa (“E-2 Visa”).
Contact us today for a free initial consultation.
Family and Employees
The E2 may also cover the applicant’s spouse and other immediate family (i.e. unmarried children under 21). The spouse may apply for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD), giving them the right to work in the United States. (Family need not come from the same country as the E2 holder.)
Similar to the E1 “Treaty Trader” visa, the E2 visa may also be extended to other personnel who:
- will occupy supervisory or executive positions,
- are considered essential to the running of the business,
- meet the definition of “employee” in law,
- and come from the same country as the E2 applicant.
Requirements of the E2 Visa Investment
As a general guide, we may recommend the E2 route to people with a minimum of US$100-200,000 to invest. In exceptional cases, USCIS will consider applications with amounts as low as US$50,000.
Period of Stay
E2 visas are valid for up to two years, with an unlimited number of two-year extensions possible.
Note that all persons covered by E2 visas are permitted to travel in and out of the U.S., and the primary visa holder will automatically get a two-year extension granted on re-entry to the country.
However this does not apply to family members, who are strongly advised to monitor carefully their permitted stay and time remaining so that they apply for any extensions in good time.
How Long is an E-2 Visa Valid for?
- E-2 visas can initially be granted for any period but up to five years, during which time the holder may travel freely in and out of the U.S.
- E-2 visas are renewable indefinitely, meaning that they can be renewed as long as there is a need to manage and direct the underlying business.
Alternatives to the E2 Visa
- E2 applicants may also qualify for the E1 (Treaty Trader) visa, as many countries that have treaties with the U.S. for E2 also have the E1 equivalent. Both E1 and E2 can have unlimited extensions, but the E1 does not require a substantial financial investment.
- Additionally, if you have US$500,000 or more to invest, it may be worth considering going directly for the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Green Card.
- Other Green Card possibilities might be the EB1-1 “Extraordinary Ability” visa, which may be available to applicants who can prove exceptional and sustained acclaim in their particular field; or the EB2 (employment-based exceptional ability) or EB3 (skilled, professional, or other worker).
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