What You Need to Know About E-2 Visas

E-2 visas are nonimmigrant visas granted to individuals or businesses who invest in a US business and are from a country with which the US has a commerce and navigation treaty. As you research and apply for an E2 visa Houston TX, keep the following in mind.

Investment Criteria

Before applying for an E-2 visa, you need to have already or be in the process of investing in a US for-profit company. If you are purchasing a company, you may be allowed to hold the purchase price in escrow until you are granted your visa. This investment must be significant and put your money at risk. You must own at least 50% of the US company you invested in. In addition, your status will be based on your intention to manage and develop the business further.  

Your intention should be to grow the business and provide US citizens and residents with valuable employment opportunities. Your business must employ people. Therefore, passive investments, such as real estate investments you expect to appreciate in value, are not applicable. The visa term is short to determine whether you intended to grow a business or gain entry into the US.

Treaty Countries

The US has treaties with approximately 70 countries. The length of the E-2 visa depends on the agreement between the US and the investor’s nation. Other visa terms apply to various countries. For example, British Nationals must prove residence in the UK, while other countries do not have this requirement.

In addition, because investors must prove that they intend to return to their home countries at the end of the visa period, they need to show their ties to the country. This may include investments in local businesses, family and even a residence in their country of origin.

Business owners, managers and skilled workers along with their family members can apply for E-2 status. Consult an immigration attorney for more information about the visa process and requirements.

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