The E2 Investor Visa is a unique non-immigrant visa option for individuals from treaty countries who wish to work and live in the United States based on their substantial investments. In this article, we delve into the top 10 questions often asked about the E2 visa, providing comprehensive answers that help navigate the complexities of this visa category.
1. What is an E2 Visa?
An E2 visa is a non-immigrant visa category designed for individuals from countries that have a Treaty of Trade and Commerce with the United States. It allows investors to work in the U.S. based on an investment they are controlling.
2. How Can I Qualify for an E2 Visa?
Qualifying for an E2 visa requires meeting specific requirements. Notably, you must be a national of a treaty country, have made or be in the process of making a substantial investment in a U.S. enterprise, and intend to enter the U.S. to develop and direct this investment enterprise.
3. What Constitutes a “Substantial” Investment for an E2 Visa?
A “substantial” investment for an E2 visa is relative and involves a significant portion of the total cost of either purchasing an established enterprise or establishing a new one. It must be sufficient to ensure the investor’s financial commitment to the success of the enterprise and large enough to support the likelihood of successful operation.
4. What are the Specific Requirements for an E2 Treaty Investor?
In addition to being a national from a treaty country and making a substantial investment, the E2 Treaty Investor must show that they have control of the funds, and the investment is not marginal. The enterprise must also have the capacity to generate more income than just provide a living for the investor and their family.
5. Can My Family Accompany Me on an E2 Visa?
Yes, an E2 visa holder’s spouse and unmarried children under 21 may qualify for dependent E2 visas. The spouse may also apply for work authorization while in the U.S. Spouses are granted automatic work authorization and may also apply for an employment authorization document (EAD).
6. How Long Can I Stay in the U.S. on an E2 Visa?
Typically, E2 visa holders can stay in the U.S. for two years at a time, with unlimited extensions available as long as the business continues to qualify.
7. Can I Apply for a Green Card While on an E2 Visa?
Although the E2 visa is a non-immigrant visa, some E2 visa holders may be eligible to apply for a green card through different pathways like employment or family sponsorship. The process can be complex, and seeking professional legal advice is recommended.
8. Can I Work for Another Company or Start Another Business While on an E2 Visa?
The E2 visa is specifically tied to the business for which the investment was made. Working for another company or starting a different business would generally require a change of status or another type of visa.
9. How Often Do I Need to Renew My E2 Visa?
E2 visas may be renewed indefinitely as long as the underlying business remains in operation and continues to fulfill the conditions of the E2 visa category.
10. Can My E2 Visa Be Denied and, If So, What are the Common Reasons for Denial?
Yes, E2 visas can be denied. Common reasons for denial include insufficient investment, inability to prove control over the funds, or the business is not likely to generate a significant economic contribution.
Remember, each person’s situation can vary, and U.S. immigration law is complex and changes frequently. Always consult with an immigration lawyer when considering applying for an E2 visa.
E Visas for Traders & Investors
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