Overview of treaty trader (E-1) and treaty investor (E-2) visas
The E category visa is considered for business owners, business managers, investors and employees who required staying in US for work for a project that is occupied in trade between the United State and a foreign country that has a agreement with the US or that represents a substantial investment in the United States). The trade involved must be an international exchange of items between the United States and a treaty country.
E-1 Visa holders are also eligible to accept employment in the United States. E-1 Visa holders are generally admitted for a period of 2 years and extensions can be easily obtained.
REQUIREMENTS for E-1 & E-2 visas:
Requirements: E-1 (Treaty Trader)
o The applicant must be a national of a treaty country.
o The applicant must be employed in a supervisory or executive capacity, or possess highly specialized skills essential to the efficient operation of the firm.
o Ordinary skilled or unskilled workers do not qualify.
o The trade must be principally between the U.S. and the treaty country, which is defined to mean that more than 50 percent of the international trade involved must be between the U.S. and the country of the applicant’s nationality.
o The international trade must be “substantial” in the sense that there is a sizable and continuing volume of trade.
o The trading firm for which the applicant is coming to the U. S. must have the nationality of the treaty country.
o Trade means the international exchange of goods, services, and technology.
o Title of the trade items must pass from one party to the other.
Requirements: E-2 (Treaty Investor)
o The investor must be coming to the U.S. to develop and direct the enterprise.
o If the applicant is not the principal investor, he or she must be employed in a supervisory, executive, or highly specialized skill capacity.
o Ordinary skilled and unskilled workers do not qualify.
o The investment must be substantial and must be sufficient to ensure the successful operation of the enterprise.
o The percentage of investment for a low-cost business enterprise must be higher than the 50 % of investment in a high-cost enterprise.
o The investment may not be secondary. It must generate significantly more income than just to provide a living to the investor and family, or it must have a significant economic impact in the United State.
o The investor, either a real or corporate person, must be a national of a treaty country;
o The investor must have control of the funds, and the investment must be at risk in the commercial sense.
o Loans secured with the assets of the investment enterprise are not allowed
o The investment must be a real operating enterprise. Speculative or idle investment does not qualify.
o Uncommitted funds in a bank account or similar security are not considered an investment.