What Are the Requirements to Obtain an E2 Investor Visa?

If you’re considering using your investment and entrepreneurial interests to get into the United States, an E2 visa could be the right choice for you. This visa lets investors live in the United States along with their spouse and unmarried children younger than 21 while putting substantial capital into an American company.

Finding the right visa is key to entering the United States. Learn more about your options now by calling Garmo Group at 619-441-2500.

Where You’re from and When You Leave

Two of the key requirements of the E2 visa focus on where you are coming from and how long you plan on staying in the United States. Your nationality must be that of a country with an E2 treaty. This list includes hundreds of countries.

You must also plan on leaving the United States when your E2 visa runs out. There is currently no limit on how many times an E2 visa can be renewed, but you need to keep in mind your visa might not be renewed at some point if you no longer meet the qualifications to continue holding it. The E2 visa is a non-immigrant visa, so by definition, it is temporary.

Your Investment in a U.S. Business

The primary role of the E2 visa is to help those who plan on investing a substantial amount in a United States business. There is no set monetary amount that the USCIS considers to be “substantial,” so your investment is evaluated with a proportionality test.

The amount you invest is compared to the total cost of a similar established business. While there are no specific numbers regarding how much is “enough,” you should still discuss your business plans and planned investments with an immigration attorney to know how your visa will be affected.

Additionally, the business you invest in must be a legitimate enterprise. You cannot simply passively invest or invest in something sketchy like a multi-level marketing company and use that to come to the United States. The business must be an active, for-profit company. This means that investments in a stock portfolio or in residential real estate will not qualify you for an E2 visa.

Your Role in the Business

To come to the United States on an E2 visa, the business you are investing in must not be a marginal enterprise. This is defined as a business that does not and will not have the capacity to provide enough income for the investor to make a living. In short, the business must have the potential to give you enough income to live comfortably with your family.

Additionally, the business must have a strong economic impact on the community it’s established in. You may be able to show this by hiring local employees.

As noted earlier, your investment cannot simply be a passive investment. You must be planning on using your E2 visa to come to the United States to direct and develop the company. If you own at least half of the business, that demonstrates your role in the company. If you own less than half, you may still be able to prove your role by supplying evidence of your operational control of the company.

The Status of Your Funds

The money you bring to the table for your investment must be lawful. This includes money from legal employment, funds from the sale of a property or business, your own assets, an inheritance, or a gift. Be prepared to show a paper trail for the funds you are bringing to the business.

Not only must your funds be from a lawful source, they must also be irrevocably committed to the company you’re investing in. This means that your funds are inherently at risk of being lost if the business fails. If there is any guarantee that you’ll get all or some of your money back, that investment does not qualify for an E2 visa.

The E2 visa can be an excellent way for an entrepreneurial individual to get involved in the world of U.S. business. Make sure that you can fulfill these requirements before jumping into the application process.

Contact Garmo Group to Discuss Your Immigration Options Today

Whether you’re considering an E2 visa or another type of visa, talking to an experienced immigration lawyer is helpful. Set up a time to talk with us now—call Garmo Group at 619-441-2500 or get in touch with our team online.

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