Are you a national of a treaty country who wants to invest in a United States business and live in the United States? If so, you might be eligible for the E-2 visa, also known as the treaty investor visa.
What is an E-2 visa?
The E-2 visa is a nonimmigrant visa that allows nationals from treaty countries to enter and work in the United States by investing a substantial amount of capital in a local business. Treaty countries are those that have signed a treaty of commerce and navigation with the United States or have been designated as such by legislation.
The E-2 visa is not a permanent residence visa, and it does not lead to a green card directly. However, it can be renewed indefinitely as long as the investment and the business remain viable. The E-2 visa also allows the spouse and unmarried children under 21 of the investors to accompany or follow them to the United States. The spouse can apply for work authorization, but the children cannot.
What are the requirements for the E-2 visa?
To qualify for the E-2 visa, you must meet the requirements. If your are from one of the treaty countries, you must own a bona fide enterprise or be a substantial investor in one. There is no fixed minimum amount for the investment, but it must be sufficient to start and operate the business, and be proportional to the total cost of the enterprise.
The investment must also be at risk, meaning that you must be subject to partial or total loss if the business fails. And, the enterprise must not be marginal, meaning that it must have the present or future capacity to generate more than enough income to provide a minimal living for you and your family, or to make a significant economic contribution.
How to apply for the E-2 visa?
If you are outside of the United States, you must apply for an E-2 visa at a U.S. embassy or consulate in your country of nationality or residence. You will need to fill out an online nonimmigrant visa application form (DS-160), pay the application fee and schedule an interview.