The Investors visa can be a very broad category. If you are interested in investing a large sum of capital in a U.S. company you, your employees, and your family may be eligible for a visa of up to 2 years. When 2 years is up, your visa is eligible to be extended if your stay remains temporary. That means that the E-2 visa is considered non-immigrant and you should intend to leave the country in the future. If you are interested in fully immigrating to invest in a U.S. company and becoming a permanent resident, look into the green card process for investors.
To be eligible for an E-2 visa, you should see a list of countries from which investors have been approved for temporary stay in the U.S. These countries are called treaty countries, and the E-2 visa is also referred to as the treaty investors visa. If you are a national from an eligible country and are currently in the U.S., you can file for E-2 status as an investor. From outside the U.S., the U.S. state department can issue you a visa and you can declare investor status when you enter the U.S.
To be an eligible investor, you should own at least half of the commercial enterprise and plan to oversee, direct, and advance its further growth. The enterprise must present a substantial investment, meaning that it can financially sustain the investor and his or her family and aims to generate new jobs, goods, or services.
However, the investment should still meet traditional business standards of being at risk for loss and aimed at making profit. The investment should meet legal requirements and the investment capital must be gotten lawfully. That means that money flowing into the enterprise cannot have involved criminal activity on any level.
Spouses and children of investors can also travel on the E-2 visa, and they are not subject to the same nationality requirements as the investor. The children must be unmarried and under the age of 21.
If you are the family member of an investor already in the U.S. and would like to change your status to the E-2 visa, you can file to change your status. Immediate family members of investors are generally given an E-2 visa for the same amount of time as the investor and can usually be similarly renewed.
For more information and help with getting a visa, contact immigration attorney Phillip Kim.