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The E2 visa is a type of visa that authorizes foreign investors to enter the United States to expand and run their companies. This visa is available to people from nations with a treaty of commerce and navigation with the United States. In addition, the E2 visa provides a path for entrepreneurs to invest in the U.S. and create jobs while benefiting the U.S. economy.
Importance of the E2 Visa
The E2 visa offers considerable benefits for foreign investors who want to launch a business in the U.S. The visa allows the investor to reside and work in the U.S. while growing their business. Additionally, the visa can be restored indefinitely if the investor meets the eligibility requirements. The E2 visa also allows the investor's partner and children to enter the U.S. with them and stay for the period of the E2 visa.
Flexibility in Business Type
One of the most substantial advantages of the E2 visa is its flexibility in terms of business type. Unlike other visa classifications that limit you to a specific industry or type of company, the E2 visa allows you to invest in and operate almost any business.
Ability to Bring Family Members
Another advantage of the E2 visa is that it allows you to bring your partner and unmarried kids under 21 to the U.S. Your family members can also work and attend school in the United States, providing additional opportunities.
No Specified Investment Amount
While the E2 visa needs a substantial investment in a U.S. business, there is no set amount that you must invest. Instead, the investment must be "substantial" about the total expense of the business, which can differ widely depending on the industry and location.
Fast Processing Times
The E2 visa has relatively quick processing times compared to other visa categories. Once you have presented your application and all required documentation, you can anticipate obtaining a judgment within weeks or months.
Renewal and Extension Options
E2 visa holders can renew their visas indefinitely if they meet the program's requirements. Additionally, if you need more time to develop and grow your business, you can apply for an extension of your visa beyond the initial two-year period.
Opportunity to Become a Permanent Resident
While the E2 visa is a nonimmigrant visa, it provides a pathway to permanent residency in the U.S. If you meet certain criteria, you may apply for a green card and become a permanent resident.
How to Apply for the E2 Visa
The application process for an E2 visa involves the following steps:
- The applicant must complete and submit Form DS-160, the online nonimmigrant visa application.
- After filling out the applicable form, applicants must plan an interview at a U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country.
- During the interview, the applicant will be asked questions about their company and their objectives for running it in the United States.
- If the E2 visa is approved, they will be issued an E2 visa and can enter the United States to start working for their company.
Eligibility Requirements for the E2 Visa
To become eligible for obtaining an E2 visa, the applicant must be a resident of a treaty nation, have funded a significant amount of capital into a United States business, and be coming to the U.S. exclusively to develop and run the company. The investment must be sufficient to ensure the thriving function of the company, and the investor must have a controlling stake in the business. In addition, the company must be an engaged, for-profit business.
Key Terms for E2 Visas
- Treaty Country: A nation with which the United States has a commerce and navigation treaty comprising provisions for E2 visa eligibility.
- Investor: A person who invests considerable capital in a qualifying company.
- Business: A commercial company that is engaged in a lawful activity.
- Substantial Investment: A substantial amount of capital sufficient to guarantee the business's success.
- Employee: A person, the E2 visa holder, hires to work for the qualifying company.
- Essential Employee: An employee with special aptitudes or knowledge required to operate a U.S. business successfully and therefore qualifies for an E2 visa.
- Executive Capacity: A position of high-level obligation within a U.S. company, such as a CFO, CEO, or COO, that qualifies an individual for an E2 visa.
- Consular Processing: The procedure of applying for an E2 visa at a U.S. embassy or consulate abroad.
- Business Plan: A thorough document summarizing a business's goals, strategies, and financial projections.
- Qualifying Business: A company that fulfills the requirements for E2 visa eligibility, including being engaged in a lawful activity, being owned by a treaty country national, and having a substantial investment from the E2 visa holder.
Final thoughts on E2 Visas
The E2 visa works as a valuable option for foreign investors to establish a company in the U.S. and contribute to the United States economy. Moreover, investing in a U.S. company can create jobs and stimulate economic expansion while benefiting from living and working in the United States. If you are a treaty country citizen interested in investing in a U.S. business, the E2 visa may be an ideal option for you to consider.
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Meet some of our E2 Visa Lawyers
August 5, 2021
My name is Melissa “Mel” Green and I provide legal counsel to entrepreneurs, start-ups, and small businesses that is clear, concise, and focused on the practical impact of decisions. As trusted legal counsel, I proactively identify risks, and develop effective, practical solutions that protect my clients businesses, create positive outcomes, and help mitigate legal exposure. My areas of expertise include business formation, contract law/commercial transactions, healthcare law, and intellectual property. I also provide services as an outside general counsel or “fractional general counsel”. Prior to starting my own law firm, I spent the majority of my career in-house at large and small corporations, both for profit and not-for-profit, working with senior and executive management, in addition to other stakeholders at a variety of management levels. to proactively identify and address risks, mitigate legal exposure, streamline processes, lead persuasive negotiations that are integral to ensuring positive outcomes for the organization, and deliver hands-on, spectacular client service. There came a time when I realized that individuals and smaller entities were not receiving the same level of legal support and guidance as mid-size to large companies and as a result, individuals and small businesses were not growing and sustaining on the same level. I wanted to use my expertise to provide those that were underserved by the legal market with competent counsel at an affordable price. With the increasing number of new businesses, I knew that I could make a difference to those that needed legal guidance but were putting it off in fear of “Big Law” prices. I love to “partner” with my clients, get a deep understanding of their business, develop lasting professional relationships and watch them prosper. I want to find a way to help my clients maximize the reach, value and impact of their business. Services that I have provided over the course of my career: (i) reviewing, drafting and negotiating commercial agreements (leases, MSAs and SOWs, consulting services agreements, confidentiality agreements, SaaS agreements, coaching agreements, independent contractor agreements, coaching agreements, photographer agreements, waivers and releases, licensing agreements, etc.), (ii) business formation (operating agreements, written consents, bylaws, etc.), (iii) preparing policies and procedures for businesses in highly regulated industries, (iv) conducting federal trademark searches and filing trademark applications/preparing trademark opinion letters after conducting appropriate legal research, and (v) general business counsel.
August 25, 2021
Keidi S. Carrington brings a wealth of legal knowledge and business experience in the financial services area with a particular focus on investment management. She is a former securities examiner at the United States Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) and Associate Counsel at State Street Bank & Trust and has consulted for various investment houses and private investment entities. Her work has included developing a mutual fund that invested in equity securities of listed real estate investment trusts (REITs) and other listed real estate companies; establishing private equity and hedge funds that help clients raise capital by preparing offering materials, negotiating with prospective investors, preparing partnership and LLC operating agreements and advising on and documenting management arrangements; advising on the establishment of Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs/Token Offerings) and counseling SEC registered and state investment advisers regarding organizational structure and compliance. Ms. Carrington is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University with a B.A. in International Relations. She earned her Juris Doctorate from New England Law | Boston and her LL.M. in Banking and Financial Law from Boston University School of Law. She is admitted to practice in Massachusetts and New York. Currently, her practice focuses on assisting investors, start-ups, small and mid-size businesses with their legal needs in the areas of corporate and securities law.
August 10, 2021
T. Phillip B.
Attorney creating plans and strategies to help individuals create, build, protect and pass on wealth.
August 3, 2021
Tim has 20 years of experience representing a wide variety of emerging and established companies in the technology, software, bitcoin and professional services industries. He works directly with his clients’ executives and boards of directors on corporate, intellectual property, and securities law issues. Recently, Tim has advised clients on Series A and Series B financings, corporate structuring, complex video licensing agreements, and structuring new hedge funds. Tim previously served as Forrester Research, Inc.’s General Counsel and Secretary where he was chief legal officer, led the company’s legal group, and managed the company’s legal and regulatory affairs. Tim played an integral role in the company’s initial public offering in 1997 and coordinated its secondary offering in 2000. He directed the legal process in the company’s acquisitions of Giga Information Group, Inc., Fletcher Research and Forit GmbH and oversaw over $125million in transactions. He also managed the company’s intellectual property assets. Tim is admitted to practice in Massachusetts and New York. Tim holds a Juris Doctor degree from the Boston College Law School and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Trinity College
August 4, 2021
I’m a New York based attorney with substantial experience in media and art law, corporate structuring and commercial contracts. For the past several years, I have been advising startups and new business on their legal needs, with a special focus on tech and entertainment.
August 4, 2021
Robert Jay H.
My Legal career hasfocused on representing businesses (corporations and limited liability companies) as general outside counsel. In this capacity, I have drafted a broad range of legal documents as well as analyzed proposed agreements drafted by the other party's attorney to the agreement for the pupose of determining the risks to which my client would be exposed. I maintained the client's minute book if no one in-house was available for that task. Additionally, if rquested, I served as a general advisor to the client's executive offers and to its Board of Directors.
August 5, 2021
Corporate counsel with years of in-house experience working with and reporting to board / executive-level and upper management, along with extensive regional / national law firm background in commercial transactions and contracts, complex commercial litigation, and employment matters. Skilled at executing corporate priorities, driving profitability by implementing goal-oriented processes to achieve revenue and productivity targets, and managing company litigation and outside counsel. Recognized for creating policies and practices to address ethical dilemmas and resolving misconduct.