An investor visa which is also called an (E-2) allows foreign nationals of a specific country to be admitted into the United States when investing a large amount of capital into a U.S.-based business. One caveat is that the United States must maintain a treaty of commerce and navigation to be in good standing in order to proceed with the E-2 treaty.
General Restrictions of a Treaty Investor
A few examples are:
- Country must have a plausible treaty of commerce and navigation in place
- Have invested a substantial amount of capital into a U.S. based enterprise
- Directing and developing the invested enterprise and also displaying at least 50% ownership of the enterprise or possession of operational control through a managerial position or other corporate devices.
- Work legally within the U.S. investment vehicle
- You may travel freely in and out of the U.S.
- Be accompanied by your dependents under 21, relatives and spouse. Your spouse may also work while in the U.S. while your dependents may attend U.S. schools, colleges, and universities, and do not have to apply for a separate student visa.
Filing For A Change of Status
If the treaty investor is currently in the United States in a lawful nonimmigrant status, he or she may file Form I-129 to request a change of status to an E-2 classification in case the treaty holder needed to do so. If the desired employee under the E-2 status is currently in the United States in a lawful nonimmigrant status, the qualifying employer may file Form I-129 on the employee’s behalf in order to achieve a change of status.
Treaty Countries With The United States
Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cameroon, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Grenada, Honduras, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Luxembourg, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Netherlands, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Republic of Congo, Romania, Senegal, Slovak Republic, Spain, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad & Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and Yugoslav.
The E-2 visa is a complex documented oriented process. It’s always a good idea to approach an immigration attorney before you start the process. For information, please give us a call at (602) 687-2010 or email us at [email protected].