Investor Immigration: E-2 Visa Requirements for Investors
What are the E-2 visa requirements for investors?
Answer from investor immigration lawyer:
The E-2 Treaty Investor Visa USA is the ideal nonimmigrant visa for foreign entrepreneurs and investors wishing to start a business in the United States. The E-2 visa allows a foreign investor to live and work in the US to direct and develop a business. This article details the important general requirements to qualify for an E-2 investor visa. However, please note that each US embassy and consulate has its own procedures and may have certain specific application requirements.
List of E-2 Investor Visa USA Requirements:
Treaty Country Nationality:
The investor must be a national of a country which has the required E-2 treaty with the United States. For a list of E-2 treaty countries, please see our article on this subject: Investor Immigration: Which Countries are Eligible for an E-2 Investor Visa?.
Substantial Investment Amount:
The investment in the US enterprise must be substantial. For a more detailed analysis of the substantial investment amount E-2 visa requirement, please see our article on this subject (hyperlink). There is no specific dollar amount that must be invested. Rather, the investment must be sufficient to ensure the successful operation of the US enterprise. To determine the substantiality of an investment it is important to examine the amount normally required to develop or purchase a similar business. The required investment amount should be proportional to the regular startup expenses for the type of business you are starting. Generally, the recommended minimum investment amount is between $100,000 and $150,000. However, the amount could be significantly less. Investments in lower startup cost businesses, such as online and consulting businesses, require lower investment amounts to be deemed substantial than manufacturing or other high investment industries. The lowest investment amount we have seen that was deemed substantial for E-2 investor visa purposes was $15,000. Please note, gifts and funds obtained through a personally guaranteed loan could qualify for an E-2 visa.
If you are wondering whether your proposed capital investment is substantial for an E-2 investor visa USA, if you would like more information on E-2 visa requirements for investors, or if you would like to develop your personalized investor visa USA strategy, contact our investor immigration lawyer.
The US enterprise cannot be marginal. The US enterprise cannot solely provide a living for the E-2 investor and her family. The E-2 enterprise must grow and generate sufficient income to require the hiring of US workers in the near future.
To qualify, the E-2 investor must actively be in the process of investing or have already invested the funds in the E-2 enterprise. All funds that are invested must be at risk of loss and irrevocably committed. The investment must be in a real operating enterprise which offers, develops, or manufactures tangible goods or services. There is no restriction on the nature of the E-2 enterprise, which could be anything from a restaurant, to an ecommerce business or a consultancy. However, speculative or idle investments such as investments in real estate, undeveloped land, or stocks do not qualify. The E-2 investor must also be close to commencing business operations at the time of application. The E-2 enterprise does not need to be operating at the time of visa application, but it needs to be ready to start operating the moment the E-2 visa is approved.
If you are wondering whether your proposed E-2 investor visa enterprise would be considered an active investment for investor immigration purposes, if you would like more information on E-2 visa requirements for investors, or if you would like to develop your personalized investor visa USA strategy, contact our investor immigration lawyer.
Control and Source of Funds:
To qualify for an E-2 investor visa, the invested funds must belong to the investor. Gifts from relatives, friends, or third parties can be counted as part of the investment. Secured personal loans, may also be considered part of the investment as long as the loan is personally guaranteed and the business is not used as collateral for the loan. Please note, the invested funds must be at risk of being lost due to the business or enterprise being unsuccessful. The E-2 investor will have to show the lawful source of investment funds.
If you have questions about how to explain or require assistance documenting the control and source of your E-2 investment funds, or if you would like more information on E-2 visa requirements for investors contact our investor immigration lawyer.
Can spouses and children of E-2 investors also qualify for a visa?
Summary: Yes, spouses and children under the age of 21 can obtain an E-2 dependent visa if the E-2 investor’s investor immigration application is approved.
Detailed answer from investor immigration lawyer regarding E-2 visa requirements for spouses and children of E-2 investors:
If the investor is granted an E-2 visa, the E-2 investor’s spouse, and children under the age of 21, can qualify for an E-2 dependent visa. The E-2 dependents normally receive the same E-2 validity date as the E-2 investor, except for children over the age of 16 whose visa duration will be limited to the date they turn 21. Spouses of E-2 investors are eligible for employment authorization in the United States. Dependent children of E-2 investors cannot obtain work authorization, but they are permitted to attend school or university, or to simply accompany their parents to the US. After turning 21, E-2 dependent children will have to obtain a different US visa or will have to qualify for an E-2 visa in their own right in order to reside in the U.S.
If you would like to secure an E-2 dependent visa for your spouse or child, if you would like more information on E-2 visa requirements for investors, or if you would like to prepare an investor immigration USA strategy for your entire family, contact our investor immigration lawyer.
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Can employees of an E-2 company qualify for an E-2 visa?
Summary: Yes, employees of the same nationality as the E-2 enterprise who are managers, supervisors, or employees with specialized or essential skill may secure an E-2 employee visa.
Detailed answer from investor immigration lawyer regarding E-2 visa requirements for E-2 employees:
Once the US enterprise is approved as an E-2 Treaty Investor enterprise, employees of the same nationality as the enterprise may qualify for E-2 employee visas. Managers, executives, supervisors, or employees who have a specialized or essential skill may qualify for an E-2 employee visa. The E-2 employee’s spouse and children under the age of 21 may qualify for an E-2 dependent visa. Spouses of E-2 employees are eligible for employment authorization to work anywhere in the US, while children of E-2 employees may attend school or university in the US.
If you would like to secure an E-2 employee visa, if you would like more information on E-2 visa requirements for investors, or if you would like to prepare an investor immigration USA strategy for your entire company, contact our investor immigration lawyer.
Our Investor Immigration Lawyer Is Here to Help You
Would you like your own customized investor immigration USA strategy? Are you an entrepreneur looking for the most suitable entrepreneur visa USA option? Do you need assistance preparing and filing your E-2 investor visa application? Our investor immigration lawyer can devise a custom tailored E-2 investor visa USA strategy and prepare your E-2 investor visa application in compliance with all relevant investor immigration rules. As an experienced investor immigration law firm, Pandev Law has the knowledge and experience to guide you through investor immigration USA journey.
During your consultation, our investor immigration lawyer will provide an honest assessment of your case, and a recommendation about your next steps.
Disclaimer: Although this article discusses general legal issues, it does not constitute legal advice. No reader should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information presented herein without seeking the advice of counsel in the relevant jurisdiction. Pandev Law, LLC expressly disclaims all liability in respect of any actions taken or not taken based on any contents of this article.