Are you an entrepreneur who wishes to come and do business in the United States? E-2 Treaty Investor Visa may be a great visa option for you. This is a visa option to bring investment and contribute to the economy of the United States.
Although E-2 is not an immigrant visa, it is a great option for those who do not have a U.S. family relative nor a U.S. employer to come invest and do business in the United States. If you are a business owner and willing to invest to open a business office or purchase an existing business in the United States, you may consider an E-2 visa. Please note that this type of visa is only available for those in treaty countries. (To view the list of E visa treaty countries, please see here.)
Key Advantages of E-2 visas:
(1) No annual quota/limited numbers for the E-2 visa
Compared with H visas, E visas are treaty country-specific visas and not subject to annual quotas. This means no uncertainty of the lottery system nor beats the application deadlines before the quota window closes.
(2) You may stay indefinitely on E-2 visa
The first permissible stay is 2 years, sometimes at the port of entry, they may give 5-year duration for initial stay. So long as the business continues, E-2 visa holders may apply for extensions indefinitely so long as the visa holder may show their intention to return to their home country after completion of the business and the business continues to be successful in the United States.
(3) E-2 visa investors may work for the business that is the subject of your investment
One of the advantages of an E-2 visa is that you can do business within the U.S. while being employed and getting paid by the business legally. One of the E-2 eligibility is that you play a vital role in the business you are invested in. You will need to develop and manage E-2 visa investment by showing that you either own at least 50% of the business or have significant operational control through managerial positions.
(4) No minimum investment amount
Although there is no specific minimum or maximum amount for an E-2 visa investment, the investment must be a substantial amount proportionate to the nature of the business and the business shall not be a marginal enterprise.
(5) The spouse of an E-2 visa holder is permitted to work legally in the U.S.
The spouse of E-2 visa is eligible to apply for a temporary employment authorization card (EAD) and thus able to work for any companies in the U.S. or start his/her own businesses.
(7) The minor children (under age 21) of an E-2 visa holder are able to attend public K-12 schools and enjoy residence tuition rates at universities or colleges
The children under 21 of an E-2 visa holder may stay in the U.S. and attend schools without acquiring F-1 visas. This allows them to attend public K-12 schools because these schools do not issue F-1 visas for foreign students. However, once the children reach the age of 21, they can no longer be eligible for derivative visas as an E-2 dependent—they will need their own independent visa to attend schools. Children of E2 visa holders cannot work for any business in the U.S.
(8) Travel Flexibility
E-2 visa holders and their spouses and children may come and go without worrying about maintaining domicile and physical presence in the U.S. They can live outside of the U.S. for an undetermined period of time so long as their E-visa remains valid.
(9) The spouse and minor children of E-2 visa holders do not have to be of the same nationality as the main visa holder
Although an E-2 visa holder must be a citizen from one of the E-2 treaty countries, the nationalities of his/her children or spouse do not have to be from one of the treaty countries.
(10) Quicker Processing Time
An E-2 visa can be processed within 60 to 90 days. If you are applying for an E-2 visa from the UK, France, Canada or other countries where performing a background check is straightforward and simple, your visa will be approved quickly. However, if you are from a country where it is difficult to prove the source of your money/investment is clean, the application will take longer.
The E-2 visa may be ideal for those business owners or entrepreneurs who wish to come work in the U.S. for the sake of their children’s education in the U.S. However, each individual’s case is different and each type of visa has its own restrictions. In order to assess your eligibility for an E-2 Treaty Investor visa, please contact our office to schedule an individual consultation.
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