Treaty Investor (E-2) Visas
Investor Visas for persons from certain countries with
treaties with the U.S
Generally, a citizen of a foreign country who wishes to enter the United States must first obtain a visa, either a nonimmigrant visa for temporary stay, or an immigrant visa for permanent residence. Treaty Investor (E-2) visas are for citizens of countries with which the United States maintains treaties of commerce and navigation. For a list of participating countries please see below.
You must be coming to the United States to:
- engage in substantial trade, including trade in services or technology, in qualifying activities, principally between the United States and the treaty country;
- develop and direct the operations of an enterprise in which you have invested a substantial amount of capital; or
- be a national of Australia working solely in a specialty occupation.
For more information on business investment in the United States, see the U.S. Department of Commerce website SelectUSA.
Trade for Treaty Trader and Treaty Investor purposes – Examples
These are some examples of types of enterprises that constitute trade under E visa provisions.
- international banking
- The investor, either a person, partnership or corporate entity, must have the citizenship of a treaty country.
- If a business, at least 50 percent of the business must be owned by persons with the treaty country’s nationality.
- The investment must be substantial, with investment funds or assets committed and irrevocable. It must be sufficient to ensure the successful operation of the enterprise.
- The investment must be a real operating enterprise, an active commercial or entrepreneurial undertaking.
- A paper organization, speculative or idle investment does not qualify. Uncommitted funds in a bank account or similar security are not considered an investment.
- It must generate significantly more income than just to provide a living to you and family, or it must have a significant economic impact in the United States.
- You must have control of the funds, and the investment must be at risk in the commercial sense. Loans secured with the assets of the investment enterprise are not allowed.
- You must be coming to the United States to develop and direct the enterprise. If you are not the principal investor, you must be considered an essential employee, employed in a supervisory, executive, or highly specialized skill capacity. Ordinary skilled and unskilled workers do not qualify.
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