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The E2 visa, also known as the Treaty Investor visa, is a popular option for foreign nationals seeking to invest in and manage a business in the United States. This non-immigrant visa category is designed to promote international trade and investment by allowing individuals from treaty countries to operate businesses in the U.S. To successfully obtain an E2 visa, applicants must meet specific requirements that demonstrate their eligibility and intention to invest.

Eligible Nationalities and Treaty Countries: The E2 visa is only available to citizens of countries that have a treaty of commerce and navigation with the United States. These treaties establish the conditions under which nationals of those countries can qualify for the e2 visa. It’s important for applicants to ensure that their home country is on the list of treaty countries before proceeding with their application.

Investment Requirements: One of the central requirements for obtaining an E2 visa is a substantial investment in a U.S.-based enterprise. While there is no fixed amount set by law, the investment must be considered substantial in proportion to the total cost of purchasing or creating the business. Generally, the investment should be sufficient to ensure the successful establishment and operation of the business.

Source of Funds: Applicants must provide evidence that the investment funds come from legitimate sources. This may involve providing documentation of the source of funds, such as tax records, business documents, or bank statements. It’s crucial to establish that the investment capital has been lawfully acquired.

Ownership and Control: The investor must maintain a significant ownership stake in the U.S. business, typically at least 50%. Additionally, the investor or other employees from the same treaty country must possess the ability to direct and develop the business. This demonstrates the investor’s active involvement in the enterprise.

Marginality of Investment: The investment must not be a marginal one. This means that the business should have the capacity to generate more than enough income to support the investor and their family. The business should have a significant economic impact and contribute to job creation or growth within the U.S.

Intent to Depart: Unlike some other visa categories, the E2 visa does not require the investor to demonstrate intent to return to their home country after a temporary stay in the U.S. However, the investor must have a genuine intention to depart the U.S. once the E2 status comes to an end.

Renewal and Duration: The initial period of stay granted under the E2 visa can vary, but it is usually up to five years. Investors can apply for extensions as long as they continue to meet the visa requirements. There is no maximum limit to the number of extensions an investor can receive, making the E2 visa an attractive option for long-term business operations in the U.S.

In conclusion, the E2 visa offers a pathway for foreign investors to establish and operate businesses in the United States. Meeting the visa requirements involves demonstrating eligibility through substantial investment, legitimate source of funds, ownership and control of the business, non-marginality of investment, and genuine intent to depart after the visa period. As with any immigration process, it’s advisable to consult with legal experts who specialize in immigration law to navigate the complex application process successfully.

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