If you make a substantial investment in a U.S.-based business, you may be eligible to apply for an E2 Visa. This Visa will allow you to live and work in the U.S. for a minimum of three months and a maximum of five years, although the maximum may be eligible for extension.
Since the E2 Visa comes with complex requirements, you should consult with an immigration attorney. to help you through the process. In the meantime, you can review this list of questions to see if immigration benefits through an E2 Visa may be right for you.
Are You A Citizen Of A Country With Which The U.S. Is A Citizen Of A Country With Which The U.S. Do You Have A Trade Agreement?
The United States and your home country must share an E2 treaty. E2 treaty that helps to simplify economic and commercial collaboration. You can find the treaty countries online or consult with an immigration attorney. You must be a citizen of a trade treaty country, not a legal permanent resident.
Are You Making A Substantial Investment In The Business?
The definition of substantial investment varies from one situation to another and from one person to another. However, for purposes of an E2 Visa, it means that the investment must be significant enough to facilitate the successful operation of the business.
While the EB5 Visa requires a specific minimum dollar amount, the E2 does not. In general, the investment must be $100,000 or more. In some cases, the authorities may grant a Visa for a smaller investment, but usually a larger dollar amount carries more weight.
You can document the importance of the investment to business operations with a list of items you have purchased for the business, receipts, business and personal bank statements, accounting documents and a business plan.
Are Your Funds At Risk?
You need to be committed to your business purchase or start-up effort. To qualify for the E2 Visa, you must have spent the funds and be at risk of losing your money if the business fails. The immigration authorities will not consider a loan that you have backed by investment assets.
You should do your homework on the business in which you want to invest to learn all about the company and its competitors to assess its present status and future potential. Then, to protect your investment, you can negotiate a sales agreement with the existing owner, detailing the terms and conditions of purchase, pending their thorough evaluation.
If you want to demonstrate your commitment while still protecting your funds, you can open an escrow account to hold your entire investment and transfer the funds when your E2 Visa application is approved.
Is The Business Real?
Your company needs to provide real goods or services. Think of a retail store, restaurant, or doctor’s office as just a few examples. For an E2 Visa, you cannot invest in stocks, simple real estate, or vacant land. You also may not keep the funds in a checking or savings account. Your money must be in use, contributing to a real operating entity.
Does The Business Have A Significant Economic Impact?
Your business investment should result in a substantial economic impact on the local community in the United States. Therefore, you cannot invest in a business with a minimal projected return on investment or one that only supports you and your family. In addition, since the business cannot be established solely to support the investor, it is highly recommended that the investor hire or be in the process of hiring U.S. workers.
Are You Running & Developing Business In The United States?
To qualify for the E2 Visa, you must demonstrate ownership of 50% or more of the business or demonstrate operational control in a leadership role. This means that you need to hold an executive, managerial or supervisory position or possess a specialized skill. An average position, whether skilled or unskilled, will not help you obtain an E2 Visa. Their unique talents must be vital to the company’s chances of success.
If you believe that an E2 Visa will meet your needs and requirements, you should look for a law firm that provides immigration services.. You can start by searching for “immigration lawyers near me” or “immigration attorney near me”.
Processing times for E2 Visa applications vary from several weeks to a few months, based on the Embassy you use to apply. You can take advantage of 15-day premium processing if you are already in the United States when you apply.
Are Investors The Only People Who Can Apply For An E2 Visa?
An employee of yours may also apply for an E2 Visa. Your employee must have the same citizenship of an E2 trade treaty country as you do. In addition, he or she must meet the definition of an employee under U.S. law. Finally, your employee must be essential to your business because of managerial or executive talents or a highly specialized skill.