The E-2 Treaty Investor Visa allows nationals from countries that have a Treaty of Trade and Commerce with the United States to invest a substantial capital in a U.S. business. To qualify for an E-2 visa, the investor must actively participate in the development and direction of the enterprise, and the investment must be in a bona fide business.
A "bona fide business" is a legitimate and functioning commercial or entrepreneurial venture that provides services or items for profit. The business must comply with applicable legal standards and not exist only to provide a living for the investor and their family.
The E-2 visa is initially valid for two to five years but can be renewed indefinitely, provided the investment continues to fulfill the E-2 requirements.
Procedure & Requirements
- The investor must have the citizenship of a treaty country;
- To ensure the successful operation of the enterprise the investment must be substantial and sufficient, with investment funds or assets committed and irrevocable;
- The business must be a real operating enterprise, and the investor must actively be in the process of investing or have already invested the funds;
- The investor must possess the ability to develop and direct the business, holding at least 50% ownership, or possessing operational control;
- Upon meeting the requirements, the investor should file a Form DS-160 with the U.S. Consulate in their home country;
- If already in the U.S., the investor may file Form I-129 to change status to E-2;
- Interviews at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate are typically required for E-2 visa approval.
- Spouses and/or unmarried children under the age of 21 are eligible to accompany the investor in E-2 dependent status. Spouses are eligible to obtain work authorization in the U.S.;
- There is no statutory limit on the number of E-2 visas issued annually;
- E-2 visas generally allow travel in and out of the U.S., but it's advised to consult with an immigration attorney regarding specific travel considerations;
- E-2 visa holders may extend their status by filing for extensions or leaving and reentering the U.S.