The e2 visa from offshorecitizen allows foreign businessmen who invest in the United States and their families to live and work legally in the country. The entrepreneur and their spouse may remain in the United States indefinitely while all the requirements of the visa are met.
The children of the entrepreneur may remain in the United States with a visa derived from the investor status of their father or mother while they remain single and are less than 21 years old.
Holders of an E-2 visa could even request a B-1 visa for domestic employees who already have in the country of origin and who want to be accompanied to the United States, such as nannies of children.
Characteristics and requirements of the E2 visa for investors in the United States
If you are interested in living in the United States and have money to invest a moderate amount and skills to manage a business, E2 can be the right visa. Before starting the process it is convenient to know the basic characteristics and requirements of the visa:
1. It is a nonimmigrant visa. This means that it must be renewed periodically and that it is not a green card (also known as a green card ). The E2 visa also does not offer a direct path to permanent legal residence or American citizenship.
2. It’s about becoming a business owner. The business can be created from scratch or it is also possible to buy an existing business. It is even possible to use these visas to send employees of a company to work in a subsidiary in the United States. What is not allowed is to apply for the E-2 to manage a business that has been inherited in the United States. The business can be a franchise. These are considered the 10 best franchises in the country.
3. The business must be real and active. It must produce a good or service. In addition, you must have all the necessary permits and licenses to operate. It can not be a non-profit organization. These are 21 real business examples created by investors with an E-2 visa. And to give it legal form, these are the 10 types of companies that exist in the United States.
At this point, it is very important to understand that a real estate investment by itself is not enough to apply for or obtain an E-2 visa. It is necessary that it is a real estate business.
4. Size of the business. The law is silent at this point and does not require a minimum size. However, it is strictly necessary to generate benefits that go beyond merely covering the expenses and needs of the investor and his family. What is more, it is asked to produce what is called an “important contribution to the economy.”
This requirement is usually considered fulfilled when the business generates employment by hiring American citizens. In the presentation of the documentation to apply for the visa, it will be necessary to present a Five-year business plan that contemplates the number of jobs that will be created. Therefore, it is very important that the company is successful. Therefore it is convenient to know which are the states in which it is easier to do business and which are the most difficult.
5. Amount to invest. The law does not establish a minimum amount but says that it must be substantial, which may vary according to the type of business. Find out about the meaning of this quantity requirement.
6. Countries of which the investor must be national. These are the Spanish speaking countries whose nationals can apply for this visa: Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Spain, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, and Paraguay. You can also check the list of all countries, how dual nationality affects and obtain more information about the amount of investment.
7. Origin of investment money. Obviously, it must be legal. In addition, it must belong to the investor (savings, inheritances, investments) or they can even admit loans.
8. Investor’s family. The husband, wife, and children under the age of 21 of the investors can count on a derivative visa to live in the United States.
The spouse may request, once in the United States, a work permit that will allow you to work for another company, for your partner or even create your own business.
The children will only be able to enjoy this visa until they are 21 years old, from that age they will have to leave the country or have another visa that allows them to stay in the United States. Because of their age, they are probably of school age. It is very important to become familiar with the education system as soon as possible.
9. It is a possible but complicated visa. It is highly advisable to contact a firm of lawyers specialized in this type of case before making any investment in the United States with the intention of obtaining this visa.
The attorney must, at a minimum, offer business analysis service and if you can qualify to obtain the approval of the immigration authorities. You must also complete all the documentation, collaborate in the preparation of the interview that will be carried out in the corresponding consulate, and resolve all the doubts of the potential investor regarding immigration. The lawyer should be the point of contact with the government offices to solve problems that may arise during the process.
If possible, the interested party should contact more than one professional and compare services and reputation in this class of cases, which are very specific.
10. Differences with the EB-5 visa. Both are visas for investors, but the E-2 is non-immigrant while the EB-5 gives the right to obtain a green card. In addition, there is a big difference in the requirements of the amount of investment between one and the other.
To take into account: other visa and country options
A similar but different visa is E-1 for merchants under the treaty. It is designed for an import/export business. In cases where neither E-1 nor E-2 is an option, you can consider these 8 possible ways to obtain a visa and create a business in the United States.
In addition, if you are willing to emigrate to a country other than the United States, you should also familiarize yourself with the programs of these 20 countries in which it is possible to obtain citizenship (passport) or residence for investment.
If the decision is finally the United States, it is important that you become familiar with the legal, migratory and economic aspects of the country. Timely knowledge will make life easier and smoother.
If the investor decides to apply for the visa, once they complete the petition they can check their status online.