Investors and Traders

Treaty Traders and Treaty Investors who are foreign nationals may obtain temporary nonimmigrant visas known as E-1 and E-2, respectively. 

The E-1 visa allows a national of a treaty country (a country with which the United States maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation) to be admitted to the United States solely to engage in international trade on his or her own behalf. Trade includes commercial transactions in goods and trade in services and technology like banking, insurance, transportation, tourism, communications, data processing, advertising, accounting, design and engineering, management consulting, technology transfer and other measurable services which may be traded. A current list of countries with which the United states maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation is available here. Certain employees of such a person or of a qualifying organization may also be eligible for this classification. Dependent family members of E-1 Treaty Traders and Employees may also apply for an E-1 status, and if approved, would be granted the same period of stay as the principal applicant. The E-1 visa permits the holder to work legally in the U.S. at a company which meets certain requirements, travel freely in and out of the U.S., and stay in the U.S. on a prolonged basis with unlimited 2-year extensions as long as you maintain the E-1 qualifications. 

The E-2 visa allows a national of a treaty country, as described above, to be admitted to the United States when investing a substantial amount of capital in a U.S. business. The amount of money considered to be "substantial" is not fixed. Some consulates accept as little as $50,000, while others require more. If the amount to be invested is greater than $500,000, then permanent immigration may be an option for you. Investment activities also include the purchase of a new business. Certain employees of such a person or of a qualifying organization may also be eligible for this classification. Dependent family members of the E-2 Treaty Investors and Employees may also apply for an E-2 status, and if approved, would be granted the same period of stay as the principal applicant. The E-2 visa permits the holder to work legally in the U.S. in the company that is the investment vehicle in the U.S., travel freely in and out of the U.S., and stay in the U.S. on a prolonged basis with unlimited 2-year extensions as long as you maintain the E-2 qualifications. 


The optimal visa option in your case may vary depending on your particular circumstances and situation. To determine the best course of action in your individual case, please contact our office to schedule a free consultation.