The E Visa Category is useful for business owners, managers and employees who need to enter the U.S. to oversee or work in an enterprise engaged in trade between the U.S. and a foreign state (E-1 Treaty trader Status) or who will oversee or work in an enterprise that constitutes a major investment in the U.S. (E-2 Treaty Investor).
Basic Requirements for both the E-1 and E-2 Category:
- Treaty exists between the U.S. and applicable country;
- Majority ownership or control of the investing or trading company must be held by nationals of the applicable country; and
- Person to enter in E status must have citizenship of the applicable country.
For example, if the trade or investment is between the U.S. and China, then
- There would need to be an applicable treaty between the U.S. and China;
- Majority ownership or control (at least 50%) must be held by national(s) holding Chinese citizenship; and
- Person to enter in E status must be a citizen of China
Additional Requirements for the E-1 Treaty Trader Application:
- The trading company must be engaged in trade with the U.S. (the exchange, purchase or sale of goods or services);
- The trade must be substantial (no minimum set dollar amount, instead the volume, number and continued course of trade is reviewed);
- The trade must be principally between the U.S. and the applicable country (more than 50%); and
- The person to enter the U.S in E-1 status must perform supervisory or executive services or have skills that are essential to the successful operation of the business.
Additional Requirements for the E-2 Treaty Investor Application:
- The investment must be active and based on an irrevocable commitment of funds that represents an actual, active investment;
- The investment must be substantial. There is no minimum dollar amount, instead the following is reviewed: whether the investment is proportional to the total value of the enterprise (usually applied to investments in existing businesses) or, whether it is an amount that is considered necessary to start the type of business;
- The investment cannot be marginal (meaning that it will only support the investor and the investor’s family), instead it should create job opportunities for U.S. workers; and
- The person to enter the U.S. in E-2 status must fill a key-role in its operation (develops and directs the investment, qualified manager or specially/highly trained employee).