E-2 Treaty Investor Visa

The E-2 treaty investor visa is available to an individual who is investing a “substantial” amount of capital in a U.S. business. You may qualify by starting a new enterprise or by investing in an existing business. To qualify for an E-2 visa, an individual must:

  • Be a national of a country with which the United States maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation. See here for list of treaty countries.
  • Have invested, or be actively in the process of investing, a substantial amount of capital in a bona fide enterprise in the United States.
  • Be seeking to enter the United States solely to develop and direct the investment enterprise.

"Substantial" Investment

Whether or not the capital invested is “substantial” is subjective. The amount of the investment is weighed against the total cost of purchasing an established business or establishing a new one, the likelihood of the investor’s financial commitment to the business, and the likelihood of success of the business.

Investment "At-Risk"

Not only does the investment have to be “substantial,” It is also crucial to demonstrate that the investment capital is “at risk,” meaning that it is subject to partial or total loss if the business fails. Simply holding funds in a business bank account is therefore not sufficient to meet the “at-risk” requirement. The source of the funds must be documented as well to demonstrate that they did not arise from criminal activity.

Must Not Be "Marginal"

The enterprise must also not be marginal, meaning it must have the capacity to generate more than enough income to provide a minimal living for the investor and family.

Duration of Stay

The E-2 visa is granted for two years initially and can be extended in two-year increments. There is no limit on number of E-2 extensions.

How We Can Help

  • We prepare the application and documentation and a legal brief detailing your eligibility for the E-2 classification.
  • We connect you to other professionals to assist in the establishment of your enterprise, such as accountants and business plan writers.
  • If you are in the U.S. and wish to file a change of status, we file the application with USCIS. If you plan to obtain your visa at a consulate outside the U.S., we tailor the application to meet the filing requirements of that particular consulate.

We welcome you to contact the Brian M. Wang | Whiteman Osterman & Hanna LLP to schedule a consultation about how we may be of service in your immigration matter. Based in the Albany, NY Capital District area, we assist clients throughout New York, in all 50 states, and worldwide with United States immigration law.

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