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The E-2 Visa: A Complete Guide

Posted by Kripa Upadhyay | Aug 17, 2021

The E-2 Visa: A Complete GuideThe E-2 Visa: A Complete Guide

The United States actively promotes investments in its economy and offers many benefits for businesses and individuals looking to invest in the country. Many are attracted to this idea and seek to build or maintain a business within the United States. For international investors and business owners looking to travel to the United States and develop their business in the states, the E-2 visa is a great way to allow an organization or person to start or maintain a business in the U.S. 

Companies can allow essential employees, supervisors, and executive employees to work and live in the U.S. while working for the company. Larger businesses with more employees can also opt to send executive employees to the U.S. in place of the business owners. The E-2 visa offers many different options for those working in the United States. However, making sure you have all the required documents and qualifications is essential to this process. To help ease the process, an immigration lawyer can assist with questions and documents. 

What Is an E-2 Visa?

Known as the treaty investor visa, the E-2 visa is a nonimmigrant visa that allows business owners and investors to live and work in the United States if they invest a certain amount of money into a U.S business. An E-2 visa is not a green card and does not provide U.S. citizenship. Only when individuals convert their E-2 visa to an EB-5 investment visa can they begin their naturalization. 

An E-2 visa is initially granted for a two-year timeframe, but there is no limit to the number of times an E-2 visa can be renewed. Renewals are based on visa reciprocity with the E-2 passport holder country. Some countries are eligible for as little as six-month extensions, whilst others are eligible for five year extensions.

As long as you meet the requirements, you're able to work and live in the United States. This option is great for people interested in working within the U.S. without going through the process of obtaining citizenship. 

Three Benefits to the E-2 Visa

People across the globe come to the United States to invest in the economy and start high-quality businesses. While there are many different options available for those wanting to work and live in the United State, the E-2 visa offers a nonimmigration option and some other benefits, including:  

  • No limits on renewal: As long as you're able to meet the E-2 requirements, you're able to stay in the United States on the visa. 
  • Families can come together: If you and your spouse are interested in working together, you'll both be able to work for the company on the E-2 visa. 
  • No minimum investment requirement: If the business meets the standards of the E-2 visa and is running successfully, you don't necessarily have to invest a large sum of money.

While there are many benefits to applying for and using an E-2 visa, understanding the requirements and how to invest in a stable workplace is extremely important if you're planning on moving to the United States for work. An immigration attorney can help you understand the intricacies of the E-2 visa and other available options. 

What Are the Requirements for the E-2 Visa? 

Several requirements must be met to qualify for an E-2 visa:

  • There must be an existing treaty between the United States and the country where the person is a citizen. 
  • Nationals of the foreign country must hold the majority of the company's ownership. 
  • Every employee seeking a visa must come from the same foreign country that the company is based. 

These requirements are strictly for qualifying to apply for the visa, but there are also requirements for the company the person is investing in, including:

  • A substantial investment must be made and documented. This amount depends on the type of business you're investing in. 
  • The investment must be made to an active business. 
  • A citizen of the other country must own 50% or more of the business. 
  • The company's investment must be able to provide a living for their employees. 

When these investments are cleared and you can provide evidence and documentation, filing for an E-2 visa will offer access to the United States' business industry. Many businesses flourish in the United States, and people interested in maintaining their business or growing one have a great opportunity with the E-2 visa. 

Discover an Experienced Washington Immigration Attorney

If you're interested in filing for an E-2 visa, collecting the proper documents and required forms is imperative to the success of your visa application. Navigating the complexities of the United States' immigration system is time-consuming and often overwhelming. Our team at Orbit Law has years of experience working in the immigration system. We offer clients dependable legal services and extensive knowledge about the legal processes required to file for a visa. 

To make sure our clients are comfortable and able to communicate with us in their native languages, we offer our services in English, Hindi, Nepali, Punjabi, Spanish, and Urdu. 

Call (206) 623-3352 or fill out our contact form for more information about our services. 

About the Author

Kripa Upadhyay

Kripa Upadhyay Founder/Attorney [email protected] EDUCATION Seattle University School of Law, Seattle, WA, Juris Doctor (JD)  May 2007 ADMISSIONS Washington State Bar Association: Admitted May 2008 U.S District Court for the Eastern District of Washington: Admitted 2009 U.S...