When discussing visas nowadays, you will always come across the mention of the E-2 visa. It’s not a new program, but its popularity over the years has become significantly higher. This is highly attributed to the benefits that have accrued for the entrepreneurs taking advantage of the E-2 program, as well as its ease of accessibility. The ease mentioned above stems from the requirements set by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services for securing an E-2 visa. To that end, I, Martin Lawler, will highlight below all the relevant issues that surround the requirements of the E-2 visa. However, before we fully dive into the crux of this piece, it is pertinent to shed light on the E-2 visa as a whole, in order to fully understand and appreciate the value of securing an E-2 visa.
What Is The E-2 Visa according to Martin Lawler?
The E-2 visa is fully referred to as the E-2 Treaty Investor visa. It is a type of visa that is available to specific people from selected countries. Unless you are a legal citizen of a selected country that has an established commerce treaty with the United States, you can not be an applicant for the E-2 visa. The next critical aspect of the E-2 visa is regarding investment. Besides being a legal citizen of a certain country, the E-2 visa is only available to people who are in the process of having or already have an investment of a notable amount in a business enterprise in the United States. Frankly speaking, the E-2 visa was created for these investors, as its core function is to enable individuals with significant investments and potential to come into the United States to live, practice, and carry out their invested businesses, for a certain specified period. Furthermore, it is important to state that the E-2 visa can also cover the spouse of such an investor, as well as the employees of the same nationality. However, though the E-2 visa will let you stay and carry out your business in the U.S, it is not an immigration visa. What this means is that, if you have a dream of being a full-fledged U.S citizen, then this isn’t for you. This is because there is no legal way that an E-2 visa can lead to owning a United States Passport nor a U.S Green Card. It only lets you stay for some years, upon renewal. However, renewal of your E-2 visa is easily done, and it can be renewed multiple times.
Following all aforementioned details on what the E-2 visa really is, next we will move on to the main stage of this article, which is the E-2 visa requirements and all of its relevant requirements.
Martin Lawler: The E-2 Visa Requirements.
When it comes to the requirements set for obtaining an E-2 visa, they are quite strict, flexible within the business requirements. I know, it sounds a bit confusing, but I assure you, it is not. The requirements are strict in that, without meeting the main conditions, It is impossible to get this visa. Furthermore, the requirements are flexible in that; they allow for all types of entrepreneurs to be able to apply for this particular visa. Overall, the requirements set by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services for the E-2 visa are quite easy to meet. Which you can hardly say about other types of visas. These requirements are:
- The main condition to be met for acquiring an E-2 visa is being part of an E-2 approved country. That is being a legal citizen of any of the 40 plus countries that have a commerce or trade treaty with the United States. Examples of these countries are Iran, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Bolivia, Belgium, Japan, Sweden, Spain, Ireland, Cameroon, and many more.
- The second requirement is the investment of a significant amount of money in a business enterprise in the United States. To achieve this, before you can acquire this visa, you must prove that you either have or you are in the process of having a significant investment in a business enterprise in the United States. However, from my years of experience, I have seen a particular issue arise from fulfilling this condition, and that is, determining the particular sum that actually qualifies as a significant amount when investing. To this, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services does not actually provide a specific amount to ease our efforts here. However, they do provide a guideline, as they stipulate that your money should be significant enough that if your investment fails, it’ll definitely sting and hurt you. However, this clearly does not still suggest the minimum or max amount to utilize. My experience is still of help as over the years, investments between the range of $100,000 to $200,000 and above, have been approved.
- The next condition to be met is based on the applicant himself or herself. You must show that your reason for entering the United States is to develop and direct your investment enterprise. That is, you must directly affect your business in order to make it a viable one. There are several ways to show this fact when applying, one of such ways is by establishing that you have notable operational control over the business.
- The next requirement is not as difficult, but it still should be adhered to. Here, you must show that you, as the principal investor and any other E-2 employees, will be willing to leave the United States upon the end or termination of their E-2 visa.
I highly recommend the help of a professional immigration attorney, like myself, Martin Lawler. You can learn more at my website here: Martin Lawler E-2 Visas