E-1 and E-2 Investor Visas

Immigration Attorneys Helping Foreign Nationals Come to Boston

People from all over the world seek to enter, live, and work in the United States on an annual basis. Over the years, the U.S. has signed treaties with a number of countries, some of which promote trade and investment between the U.S. and the other contracting nation. The E non-immigrant visa category is designed to contribute to the American economy. Thus, the E-1 and E-2 visas permit foreign citizens to live in this country if their reason is to engage in and facilitate substantial trade between their home country and the U.S. At Maiona Ward, P.C., our skilled business immigration lawyers have helped clients in Boston and beyond pursue a wide range of visas.

Seeking an E-1 or E-2 Investor Visa

The E-1 Visa, also known as the “treaty trader” visa, permits an individual or a representative of a foreign company to live and work in the United States. Put another way, this is a non-immigrant visa that allows foreign nationals to enter the U.S. and engage in substantial trade. An individual may qualify for an E-1 visa by establishing that:

  • He or she is an executive, manager, or specialist in a treaty nation company operating in the U.S., or owns 50 percent of the company;
  • People of the nationality of his or her home country own at least 50 percent of the stock of the company; and
  • He or she is a citizen of the treaty nation country and is involved in international trade.

The E-2 Visa, also known as the “treaty investor” visa, is for people who want to enter the U.S. to start or grow a business. This is a non-immigrant visa. To qualify for an E-2 visa, the treaty investor must be a citizen of a country with which the U.S. has a treaty of commerce and navigation, have invested or be in the process of investing a substantial amount of capital in a bona fide venture in the U.S., and be seeking entry to the U.S. for the sole purpose of developing and directing the enterprise. This can typically be shown by having at least 50 percent ownership in the enterprise or possession of operational control through a managerial position of some sort.

The “substantial” investment requirement will vary depending on the industry. For example, a substantial investment will be significantly different in the context of a service-oriented business as compared to an industrial manufacturer. However, if the amount is less than $50,000, even a small business may not qualify for an E visa. This is because the investment is supposed to help stimulate the United States’ economy, not simply support the investor’s individual venture and family.

Seek Guidance from a Boston Lawyer When Pursuing Legal Status in the U.S.At Maiona Ward, P.C, our visa attorneys have years of experience handling complex immigration matters in the Boston area. We understand that these issues can be extremely daunting, and we can take the time to explain your rights and options. We proudly represent clients in Cambridge, Waltham, Worcester, and throughout Massachusetts. Maiona Ward, P.C. is part of a large network of firms serving clients across the world, so we have the resources to take on virtually all types of immigration cases. To learn more, call us at 617-695-2220 or contact us online.