Which E-Visa Can Help you?

If you are an Australian national interested in working in or operating a business in the U.S. then the US E treaty visas may be for you. There are three types of E visas which can be stamped in an Australian passport:

  • The E1 treaty trader visa which allows a holder to be in the United States in order to engage in frequent trade between Australia and the United States; Learn More About the E1 Visa >
  • The E2 treaty investor visa which allows holders to either manage a US business or work for a US business which is owned by Australian Nationals; More General Information on E-2 Visas >
  • The E3 specialist worker visa which is unique to Australians and enables Australian nationals to work in a US businesses. Learn More About the E3 Visa >

E-2 Visas for U.S. Business Owners

If you are an owner of a business in the U.S., you may be eligible for an E2 visa that will allow you to enter the U.S. to manage that business. The U.S. government will do a detailed analysis of the business in order to determine that it is properly formed and that it has the potential to succeed and employ U.S. workers.
Each case will be reviewed closely and individually, but in general, the essential elements that must be met in order to qualify for the visa are:

  1. you must be the holder of an Australian passport (or another country on the E-2 list);
  2. the U.S. business is at least 50% owned and controlled by Australian nationals or an Australian company;
  3. a substantial amount of money/assets has been invested in the U.S. business or will imminently be invested;
  4. the business is a for-profit company (non-profits/charities do not qualify);
  5. the business will do more than just earn a living for you and your dependent family, it needs to have the capacity to employ U.S. workers;
  6. you will serve as an active Manager/Executive for the U.S. business; and
  7. you intend to leave the U.S. after your visa expires. For detailed information about the requirements for an E-2 investor/manager visa, please click here: Starting a Business in the United States: E-2 Investor Visas For Australians (General Guidelines)

E-2 Visas for Australian Essential/Specialty Workers:

Australian nationals may be eligible for E-2 visas as “essential” or “specialty” workers if the following basic elements are met:

  1. the worker has a job offer from a U.S. business that matches their education and experience;
  2. the worker is going to be paid a fair wage (see the link below for more information);
  3. the U.S. business is at least 50% owned by Australians and Australians are actively developing and directing the U.S. company; and
  4. the worker is truly essential or specialized such that the U.S. business needs them and the position being offered could not instead by easily filled by a U.S. worker.

For detailed information about the requirements for an E-2 specialized worker visa, please click here: Bringing Over Australian Nationals to Work in your Australian-Owned US Business: the E-2 Essential Employee Visa (General Guidelines)

Applying for an E2 Visa in Sydney:

E2 visa applicants must submit an E2 application package which narrowly meets the guidelines set by the applicable U.S. Consulate. As different U.S. Consulates have different requirements a detailed knowledge of local requirements is essential. Our legal services include the preparation and submission of your E-2 application on your behalf. Your E-2 application will be reviewed and processed at the US Consulate in Sydney if your home residence is in any of the following:

  • Australian Capital Territory
  • New South Wales
  • Norfolk Island
  • Queensland

Applying for an E2 Visa in Sydney

In Sydney, all documents are filed electronically.

Step Description How
1. Prepare Business Plan The business plan is probably the single most important part of an E-2 and E-1 visa application. It is the “backbone” of the application package. There are various business plan preparation services. It is CRITICAL the plan is worked on in conjunction with and reviewed by an experienced E2 visa lawyer.
2. Fund Application You need to evidence that enough funds have been invested and that those funds properly fund the business. You need to place enough funds in escrow to evidence your ability to fund the business operations. In thousands of E2 applications no client has ever been asked to evidence that the funds have been spent and there is a regulation and FAM guidance stating that escrowed funds meet the “irrevocably” invested requirement. One consulate did tell one client they were uncomfortable with escrowed funds, we complained to the US State Dept. and the consulate were “over-ruled”.
3. Prepare E-2 Visa Application The business plan and other relevant evidence needs to be collated into an application package that meet the requirement of the US Consulate in Sydney. Different consulates have different guidance for the package needed for an E-2 treat investor visa application. In Sydney guidance is available here. While an experienced E2 immigration lawyer can provide more information the U.S. Department of State Foreign Affairs Manual (9 FAM 41.51)
4. Complete form DS 160. Nonimmigrant Visa Electronic Application (DS-160) form Guidance for completing for DS 160 is available from the US State Department.
Most E-2 visa applicants have their application, including form DS 160 prepared and filed by their immigration lawyer.
5. Submission of E-2 Visa Package. You or your lawyer can submit your complete application by e-mail to: [email protected]. Your application must be in PDF format and be of mot more than 100 pages (not including the application forms) with a maximum file size of 9MB and be properly tabbed and formed to consular requirements.
6. Pay your E-2 visa application fee. Visa application fees are listed here and at the time of writing are USD 205. Create a user profile online and pay the Machine Readable Visa (MRV) fee for yourself and any accompanying family members. Follow the step-by-step instructions provided at the U.S. Visa Information Service for Australia website.
7. Wait for Appointment Within fifteen (15) days of receipt of your application the US Consulate in Sydney will contact you and authorize you to schedule an appointment. Schedule appointment on-line upon consular authorization to do so.
8. Visa Interview and Visa Issuance Attend visa interview at US consulate. If your visa is issued you will have to pay the visa reciprocity fee. At the time of writing the fee for an Australian National is USD 3,574. Current Fees are posted on-line. Surender passport at consulate for stamping of E2 visa.

For a free assessment of whether you qualify for an E-2 visa, please e-mail us or call our office in Australia (+61 2 91561032).

US Consultate in Australia, Sydney
Covers: Capital Territory and New South Wales.
Level 10, MLC Centre, 19-29 Martin Place, Sydney, NSW 2000
Office: 1300 139 399
US Embassy in Canberra, Australia
Moonah Place Yarralumla, ACT 2600, Canberra
Office: +(02) 6214-5600
US Embassy in Canberra, Australia Website
[email protected]
US Consultate in Australia, Melbourne
Covers: Queensland, Tasmania and Northern Territory.
Level 6, 553 St. Kilda Road, Melbourne, VIC 3004
Office: 1300 139 399
US Consultate in Australia, Melbourne Website
US Consultate in Australia, Perth
Covers: Western Australia.
4th Floor, 16 St. George’s Terrace, Perth, WA 6000
Office: (08) 6144-5100
US Consultate in Australia, Perth Website

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Eranjan Venura Parua
Eranjan Venura Parua
3 weeks 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
3 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
3 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.

hoshino ryuichi
hoshino ryuichi
7 months ago

Thanks to them for handling my E2 visa very professionally. I had a study visa from F1 and changed it to E2. I encountered many problems during the application process. Verdie and Etta were very patient in helping me and it took a long time. I highly recommend this place.

Satyabrat Chowdhury
Satyabrat Chowdhury
6 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.

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