E-2 Visa for Treaty Investors
The nationals of countries that maintain a treaty of commerce and navigation with the United States are eligible to enter the United States for the purpose of investment under a Treaty Investor Visa (E-2). E-2 visas are available to investors who invest substantial capital in a United States enterprise, certain employees, and their spouses and children.
To schedule a free immigration visa consultation, call the Law Offices of Scott Warmuth today at 888-517-9888.
E-2 Visa Guidelines
There are different procedures to apply for an E-2 visa depending on where the investor is currently located. Investors already lawfully admitted to the United States can change their visitor status to E-2 by filing Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker. The I-129 is also used to adjust status of the investor’s employees, assuming they are also in the United States. Investors outside of the U.S. can apply for the E-2 from the U.S. State Department by filing Form DS-160, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application.
E-2 Visa Qualification
Treaty investors face certain requirements.
- They must be a national of a country that maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation with the United States
- They must have invested, or be in the process of investing, substantial capital in a United States enterprise
- They must be entering the U.S. for the purpose of developing and directing the investment enterprise.
Employees of treaty investors have a separate criteria to meet.
- Employees are the same nationality as the treaty investor
- They are considered employees under relevant law
- Employees must conduct executive or supervisory actions or have special qualifications
What Qualifies as Investment?
The USCIS defines investment as:
The treaty investor’s placing of capital, including funds and/or other assets, at risk in the commercial sense with the objective of generating a profit. The capital must be subject to partial or total loss if the investment fails. The treaty investor must show that the funds have not been obtained, directly or indirectly, from criminal activity.
They define ‘substantial capital’ as:
- Substantial in relationship to the total cost of either purchasing an established enterprise or establishing a new one
- Sufficient to ensure the treaty investor’s financial commitment to the successful operation of the enterprise
- Of a magnitude to support the likelihood that the treaty investor will successfully develop and direct the enterprise. The lower the cost of the enterprise, the higher, proportionately, the investment must be to be considered substantial.
In most circumstances, investment enterprises must be able to provide a living for treaty investors and their families.
E-2 Visa Limitations
Investors with an E-2 visa have a maximum stay of two years. The visas can be extended for two more years and do not face a limit on the maximum number of extensions. Treaty investors can only work in the activity in which they were originally approved for. USCIS needs to approve any substantial changes in the business, including mergers and acquisitions. Should a substantial change to the business occur, USCIS can be notified by filing a new Form I-129.
Speak to an E-2 Visa Lawyer today!
The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth has been helping immigrants invest, work, and reside legally in the United States since 1984. Our helpful immigration attorneys offer expert legal advice tailored to your business needs. Our goal is achieving successful immigration outcomes. If you are seeking an E-2 treaty investor visa, call us today!