The E2 visa is also known as the Treaty Investor Visa. It is a special visa applies only to citizens of countries that have trade agreements with the USA. With this visa, individuals who have significant funds for investment can go to the USA and set up a practice, office or business of their own.
The E2 visa is not equivalent to a Green Card but it allows the visa holder to stay in the country indefinitely as long as the business invested in is viable.
Eligibility For E2 Visa
To be eligible for this visa the applicant must meet the following conditions:
- He/she must be a citizen of a country that has a treaty of commerce and navigation with the USA. There are currently 82 countries that have a treaty of commerce and navigation with the USA.
- He/she must invest or be in the process of
investing a significant amount of financial capital in a new or existing bona
fide US business
- It must involve a certain amount of risk and be invested with the aim of making profit
- The investment must be a significant percentage of the total cost of starting/ purchasing the business
- In the case of a startup, the investment must be enough to start and run the business for a little while
- It should ideally be more than $100,000
- He/she must be entering the country for the sole
purpose of directing and developing the business being invested in
- The applicant must own 50% or more of the enterprise
- The applicant must be responsible for the business’s day-to-day operations
The Complete List Of USA E-2 Visa Treaty Countries
|Czech Republic||Italy||South Korea|
|Ecuador||Norway||Trinidad and Tobago|
Documents required to apply for an E2 visa include:
- DS-160 form
- A passport that is valid for at least 6 months more than the intended stay in the USA
- Passport photograph
- Proof of intent to return to one’s own country
- Proof of a steady source of income
- Proof of investment
- Proof that the business is a legitimate one. This may be-
- Tax returns
- Business plan
- IRS documentation
- Contracts/Service Agreements
- Bank Statements
- Business Licenses
- Organizational Charts and Job Descriptions
The E2 visa holder may be accompanied by their spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 years. It is not necessary for the spouse to belong to the same country.
They may also be accompanied by individuals who are from the same country and will be employed in supervisory or executive positions that are essential to the regular running of the business.
The E2 visa is valid for up to 2 years and can be renewed at the end of it for a further 2 years. The E2 visa can be extended indefinitely. A two-year extension will be granted to the primary visa holder automatically on re-entry to the country.
All dependents on the visa may travel in and out of the country as long as their visa is valid.
An E2 visa is normally processed within 2-4 weeks. The processing time is dependent largely on the workload faced by the consulate. This process can be expedited by paying a premium fee and filling in the I-907 form. The premium processing service takes up to 15 days.
E2 Visa Vs Green Card
The E2 visa has its advantages and disadvantages when compared to a Green card. Firstly, it can never be a route to US citizenship.
This may be a disadvantage for some but for others, it may be an advantage as it also means that the visa holder will not have to give up his/her native citizenship but can stay in the USA for as long as he/she likes.
Secondly, the visa is processed much faster than a Green Card. There is no certainty of when an existing visa will be converted to a Green card. However, an individual applying for the card does not need to make an investment in the USA.
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