What is an E-2 Visa?

An E2 Visa is a nonimmigrant visa which allows foreign investors from treaty countries to make a substantial investment in an existing business, business franchise, or create a new business in the U.S. It also allows foreign nationals to work with a U.S. business owned by at least 50% of foreign nationals of the treaty country.
It may be applied in the U.S. through the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) if you are already lawfully staying in the U.S. and the law allows for a change of status or through a U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad if you are outside the U.S.

What is an E2 Visa lawyer?

There are a lot of ways for foreign investors and their family members to enter the U.S. and one of the most popular options is the E2 Visa.

There is a list of requirements that foreign investors have to meet so they can qualify for an E2 Visa, and working with an immigration lawyer can help you through the process and increase your chances of getting approved.

What is the duty of an E2 Visa lawyer?

An experienced immigration lawyer ensures that your E2 Visa process is smooth and correctly done. As compared to handling the whole process yourself, you can hire a competent and experienced immigration attorney who can save you time, money, and stress. Immigration lawyers can also assist you in many ways, including a possible visa renewal in the future.

Overall, the help your immigration lawyer may help you with:

  • Gathering all the relevant documents required for your visa application;

  • Ensuring that all areas of your application are satisfactorily completed;

  • Assisting you in managing the overall business;

  • Ensuring that you're well-informed;

  • Addressing any question or issue you may have;

  • Communicating openly with the immigration authorities;

  • Submitting forms; and

  • Monitoring your visa application.

How do I check if an E2 Visa lawyer is competent and experienced?

It is not enough that your lawyer is knowledgeable about immigration law. Since they will be mainly handling your visa application, you must select a competent and experienced immigration lawyer.

Here are some questions that you can ask when selecting who will you work with:

How many E2 Visa cases have you handled? Some lawyers practice multiple areas of law while some specialize in investor visas. As with other visa applications, your lawyer should have experience handling E2 Visa cases as their practical experience can make sure that your case is handled properly, smoothly, and correctly.

Have you had an E2 Visa case denied? It is important that you also know the success rate of your immigration lawyer so you can gauge how many cases they've handled successfully.

Do you provide 24/7 access to your clients? There are law firms that use insecure paper files when handling cases. This means that you have to ask your lawyer to make a copy when you need to access your files. It can create problems when you're in a different location from the law firm, especially when you need to share and access files regularly.

Do you have experience in handling cases in my home country? The difficulty of an E2 Visa application is dependent on the local procedures and processes of the country where the petition is filed. Your lawyer must have handled cases in your home country so that they are knowledgeable on the local processes.

Are you a member of the AILA?

The AILA or the American Immigration Lawyers Association is a professional association where most immigration lawyers join. It provides continuing legal education, professional services and expertise to attorneys who practice and teach immigration law.

Are you qualified to prepare a business plan?

A business plan is one of the keys to obtaining an E2 Visa and so, it must meet the requirements of U.S. laws and regulations. It allows the U.S. government to know more about your business and to create a record for future E2 Visa renewals.

How many lawyers will work on my case?

There are law firms with a limited number of lawyers and will often place only one lawyer per case. This is why when the lawyer becomes sick or unavailable, your application is interrupted.

What are the requirements of an E2 Visa?

The E2 Visa requirements are strict, and only those who qualify can obtain this visa. In general, you must meet the following to qualify for the visa:

  • You must be a national of an E2 treaty country;

  • You must invest a substantial amount in an existing business, franchise business, or create a new business in the U.S;

  • You must invest in a bona fide enterprise;

  • Your funds must be irrevocably committed and in a bank account;

  • Your investment must not be marginal, which means that its income should not only provide a living for you and your family, but also create employment for U.S. workers and contribute to the U.S. economy;

  • Your investment must have a significant economic impact;

  • You should have control over the funds; and

  • You must come to the U.S. to direct or develop the commercial enterprise or business in which you have invested.

Nationality and Ownership

The treaty investor must be a national of an E2 treaty country, which is a country that maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation or a bilateral agreement with the U.S. or is otherwise rendered qualified by law. In a company, nationality is determined by the nationality of the individual owners of the business and is required that at least 50% of the business is owned by nationals of the treaty country.

E2 Treaty Employees

If a foreign national employee has the same nationality as that of the foreign investor of the E2 enterprise, they are also qualified for an E2 Visa. Their employment must be in an executive and or supervisory capacity or they possess special qualifications essential to the operations of the enterprise.

What are the benefits of an E2 Visa?

There are benefits that you can enjoy when you obtain an E2 Visa. Here are some of them:

  • You can legally work and reside in the U.S;

  • You can stay in the U.S. indefinitely through renewals as long as you still meet the requirements;

  • Your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 can go with you;

  • Your spouse can work in the U.S. without securing additional work authorization;

  • Your children can study in the U.S;

  • You can travel freely inside and outside the U.S;

  • Your investment does not have to be cash;

  • You don't have to invest a minimum amount of capital;

  • You don't need to prove that your business created a minimum number of jobs; and

  • You can take advantage of certain tax benefits.

How do I apply for an E2 Visa?

Please take note that since the E2 Treaty Investor Visa is a nonimmigrant visa, you can't obtain permanent residency through it. If you're planning to obtain a green card or acquire permanent resident status, you must apply for an immigrant visa.

There are two ways to obtain an E2 Visa. First, you can apply through a U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad if you are abroad. Please take note that consular procedures and processing times may vary depending on your choice of consulate. You have three consular options:

  • The consulate where you lawfully reside;

  • The consulate in your home country; and

  • The consulate where you are visiting may sometimes be willing to adjudicate the application.

Second, you also have the option to obtain E2 status by filing a Change of Status within the U.S.

To obtain an E2 Visa, you must submit your application to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in your home country. Your E2 Visa lawyer will ensure that you and your business qualify and comply with all the requirements. This includes the submission of relevant documents and the payment of the proper E2 Visa costs.

Since most E2 Visa applications are processed by consular officers, you also need to know the Foreign Affairs Manual (FAM). This manual contains the U.S. State Department's instructions to consular officers when processing E2 Visa applications. This can help you during your visa application.

What is the investment amount in an E2 Visa?

One of the requirements in qualifying for an E2 Visa is that you have invested a substantial amount of capital. However, there is no required minimum investment amount. To be considered substantial, the investment capital is proportioned to the overall size and operations of the business. For example, an investment that's substantial for a small shop is unlikely to be substantial for a larger business.

While there is no minimum amount of investment, the consular officers are guided to look for an investment of $100,000.

Moreover, it is part of the E2 Visa requirement that your investment funds are considered "at-risk".

The qualifying investment funds include the following:

  • Secured loans from your assets;

  • Cash reserves in a business account;

  • Unsecured loans; and

  • Inventory, property, or equipment you have contributed.

Meanwhile, the non-qualifying investments include:

  • Loans or mortgage debt secured by the enterprise assets;

  • Loans in which the lender has recourse against the business;

  • Cash held in personal bank accounts.

What is the validity period and period of stay for an E2 Visa?

The validity period of your E2 Visa depends on your nationality and can range from 3 months to 5 years. For example, countries such as Egypt and Bangladesh have a validity period of 3 months while those from Italy and UK may receive 5 years.

This means that you have 3 months or 5 years from the date of issuance to enter the U.S.

Meanwhile, the period of stay for an E2 Visa is for 2 years which gives you time to prove the viability of your business or investment in the U.S. After that, the visa can be extended or renewed indefinitely as long as you meet the requirements.

Can my dependents accompany me to the U.S.?

As we have said, your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 can go with you to the U.S. based on your valid E2 Visa. Your spouse can apply for work in the U.S. without the need to secure an Employment Authorization Document (EAD).

The USCIS has issued a policy announcement clarifying that spouses are considered employment authorized based on their valid E nonimmigrant status.

Why make Davies & Associates your trusted E2 Visa Lawyer?

An E2 Visa application can be difficult and long especially if you're handling it alone. There are a lot of requirements which you must satisfy. Moreover, you must strongly prove to the consular officer that you are qualified for an E2 Visa satisfactorily. You must gauge and understand what immigration officers anticipate from you as a foreign investor. In some cases, they may ask for specific format requirements that you would need to fulfil.

The help of a competent and experienced immigration lawyer can ensure that your application is smooth and correct.

Davies & Associates has helped numerous foreign investors and their families move to the U.S. through the E2 Visa. For 15 years, all of the E2 Visa cases we have handled have been successful.

Our pool of immigration lawyers is one of the first to obtain a CBI-based E2 Visa for a client through the Grenada Citizenship by Investment Program.

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Why make Davies & Associates Your E2 Visa Lawyers

Davies & Associates has helped hundreds of families move to the United States on the E2 Visa. In fifteen years we have yet to have any E2 visa application we have prepared denied when our clients have followed our recommendations.

Our immigration attorneys were one of the first law firms to obtain a CBI-based E2 Visa for a client. We achieved this through the Grenada Citizenship by Investment Program and have also used Turkish Citizenship by Investment.

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Eranjan Venura Parua
Eranjan Venura Parua
3 months ago

"After finding D&A through an internet search in 2020, my wife and I had several free consultations with David Cantor. Despite our initial attempt at filing for our E2 visa independently ending in failure, we decided to hire D&A for their expertise and support. Over the course of four long years, Verdie and Cristina were incredibly patient as we took our time to prepare for the E2 submission. Verdie became our E2 Attorney in 2021, and from the start, Verdie and Cristina's patience was evident. Despite our intermittent engagement over the years, they always treated us with the utmost attention. Working with Verdie and the D&A team was a pleasure; their professionalism and support were unwavering. Verdie's calm demeanor and succinct communication style made navigating the process much smoother, even during complex discussions. I wholeheartedly recommend Verdie and D&A - Davies & Associates, to anyone seeking an immigration law firm who can efficiently handle their case with precision and without unnecessary fanfare. Their ability to get things done speaks volumes about their dedication to their clients' success."

Jeremy Abernathy
Jeremy Abernathy
5 months ago

I had the pleasure of working with Verdie and Nessa to obtain my E2 Visa. Their in-depth knowledge and experience allowed me to be fully prepared in my application and they were able to answer all questions leading up to the Visa interview.

Saeed Muhammad
Saeed Muhammad
6 months ago

Verdie was an amazing attorney, providing exceptional client care throughout the process. He had a great depth of knowledge in all areas on business visas in the US.

Satyabrat Chowdhury
Satyabrat Chowdhury
9 months ago

I had a great experience with Davies & Associates. They are very thorough in the approach and their have experts in this field who know the domain very well.I would certainly be leaning onto them for any future needs as well.

Christine Envall
Christine Envall
a year ago

Getting my E2 Visa was a very in-depth process that took just over a year from when I committed to it, but 8 months from when I found a business I wanted to purchase. The only reason I'm giving 4 and not 5 stars is because the timeframe was a lot longer than expected from the initial information. Aside from the timing, Verdie and his team led me through the Visa process, providing all the guidance I needed to be successful, including advising me on the RIGHT type of Visa to suit my goals. Within the process I purchased a business and the greater Davies team included lawyer Rinat who helped me put the deal together. One of the biggest parts was my Business Plan which created from my info by Ana Ortiz, who did an incredible job. The process is certainly tedious and Verdie & Christina were always there to answer my questions, provide suggestions and advice and ensure I had all the documents I needed to support my application. I appreciated their patience with my questions and their advice and in the end, the application was so thorough the interview process was quick and easy. I highly recommend Davies & Associates and look forward to working with them again when it's time to renew my Visa.

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We are known for our creative solutions that obtain "impossible" visas, we solve the most complex immigration problems for businesses, investors, individuals, and families.

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Looking to relocate or having trouble with a visa applicaton?

We are known for our creative solutions that obtain "impossible" visas, we solve the most complex immigration problems for business, investors, individuals and families.

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