L-1 Visa

L-1 visas are available to employees (including executive/managers) of an international company with offices in both the United States and abroad. Typically, owners will purchase an existing business in the U.S. and relocate themselves and their immediate family to America

EB-5 Visa

The EB-5 visa requires a minimum investment of $900,000 into a new or existing business. This allows the applicant and their immediate family to live in America and work in that business. There are no other requirements like the L-1 or E-2 visa.

Being able to learn about and purchase an L-1 business all under one roof has made the process simple

Johannes De Jager

L-1 Business Owner

immigrationeligiblebusinesses.com is great! I didn’t know we were eligible for these visas and to be able to search for the business that matches that eligibility is awesome!

Louise Carter

L-1 Business Owner

The E-2 visa has allowed me and my family to move to America and take advantage of the increased economy size which has taken my business to a whole new level

Michael Carey

E-2 Business Owner

What is an E-2 Visa?

The E-2 visa is unlike an L1, EB-1c, or EB-5 visa in that it is a treaty-based visa. This means that to be eligible, an applicant must hold a passport from a country that has a current E-2 treaty with the United States. To find out if your passport allows you to apply for the E-2 visa, you can read the entire list of eligible treaty countries here.

Eligibility

The E-2 visa is an investment-based non-immigrant visa for entrepreneurs who want to come to the United States to open and operate a business. The E-2 visa does not require applicants to be a business owner or executive abroad like the L-1 visa. It also has less stringent requirements on the American business for it to qualify as immigration eligible.

In order to be eligible for the E-2 visa, an applicant must show they are a passport holder from one of these countries. The investor also must invest in, and operate, a business in America. There is no set minimum investment amount and applicants are only guided the investment must be “substantial”. This means that E-2 applications can be approved with investments as low as $50,000. However, an application with this investment will come under much more scrutiny by USCIS and an applicant should look to invest $100,000 or more depending on the business type as described below.

Required Business

E-2 visas have been approved for as low as $50,000 when the business is in a service based industry and substantial equipment and costs are not required. It is also true that many E-2 visas have been denied at the $50,000 level and even higher investment amounts. In order for your application to be approved, USCIS will need to be convinced that the investment amount is ‘substantial’ for the business type as well as that the business will be able to be successful enough to support the applicant as well as hire full time US employees.

When purchasing a larger business, outside financing can be used as well. However the financing amount will not be included in the ‘substantial investment’ figure reviewed by USCIS. A rough guide to the amount of financing is as follows:

  • For businesses requiring a start-up/acquisition cost of less than $500,000, 85%-100% of the funds should be invested by the applicant prior to visa filing.
  • For businesses requiring a start-up/acquisition cost between $500,000 and $3,000,000, no less that 50% of the funds should be invested by the applicant prior to visa filing.
  • For businesses requiring a start-up/acquisition cost over $3,000,000, no less that 35% of the funds should be invested by the applicant prior to visa filing.

An applicant should also avoid business that have been operating with minimal employees over several years. For example, owner run plus single employee business, even if generating sufficient revenue, will not make for a viable E-2 visa application. Additionally, business with high employees but low revenue or business that are “cash based” will be a good fit for an E-2 investor. 

How Long Can I Work in the United States on E-2 Status?

The visa is valid for an initial stay of two years. Request for an extension can be made indefinitely as long as the business is running and the visa holder is continuing to run the business. Each extension is valid for up to two years.

The E-2 visa does not lead directly to permanent residency, however, the visa can be extended indefinitely as long as the applicant is still working in or managing the business as there is no cap on duration. This time can prove a good opportunity for investors to make themselves eligible and apply for other immigration options that may have stricter requirements or longer wait times.

Can My Spouse and Children Live and Work in the United States?

The E-2 visa allows spouses and unmarried children under 21 to enter the United States with the principal applicant. Spouses are permitted to work in the same or different business once they have filed for work authorization (normally issued within 2-3 months). If they wish, they can also start their own business. Children can attend school, both public and private without hindrances.

Conclusion


The E-2 visa can be a great option for those that meet the country requirements and are looking to run a business temporarily or permanent in America. The E-2 typically has a lower investment requirement than the L-1 or EB-5 visas but does require the applicant to be more ‘hands on’ with the business. Coupled with other immigration visas, the E-2 can be a good foot hold for those looking to move to and live permanently in America.

 

What is an E-2 Visa?

The E-2 visa is unlike an L1, EB-1c, or EB-5 visa in that it is a treaty-based visa. This means that to be eligible, an applicant must hold a passport from a country that has a current E-2 treaty with the United States. To find out if your passport allows you to apply for the E-2 visa, you can read the entire list of eligible treaty countries here.

Eligibility

The E-2 visa is an investment-based non-immigrant visa for entrepreneurs who want to come to the United States to open and operate a business. The E-2 visa does not require applicants to be a business owner or executive abroad like the L-1 visa. It also has less stringent requirements on the American business for it to qualify as immigration eligible.

In order to be eligible for the E-2 visa, an applicant must show they are a passport holder from one of these countries. The investor also must invest in, and operate, a business in America. There is no set minimum investment amount and applicants are only guided the investment must be “substantial”. This means that E-2 applications can be approved with investments as low as $50,000. However, an application with this investment will come under much more scrutiny by USCIS and an applicant should look to invest $100,000 or more depending on the business type as described below.

Required Business

E-2 visas have been approved for as low as $50,000 when the business is in a service based industry and substantial equipment and costs are not required. It is also true that many E-2 visas have been denied at the $50,000 level and even higher investment amounts. In order for your application to be approved, USCIS will need to be convinced that the investment amount is ‘substantial’ for the business type as well as that the business will be able to be successful enough to support the applicant as well as hire full time US employees.

When purchasing a larger business, outside financing can be used as well. However the financing amount will not be included in the ‘substantial investment’ figure reviewed by USCIS. A rough guide to the amount of financing is as follows:

  • For businesses requiring a start-up/acquisition cost of less than $500,000, 85%-100% of the funds should be invested by the applicant prior to visa filing.
  • For businesses requiring a start-up/acquisition cost between $500,000 and $3,000,000, no less that 50% of the funds should be invested by the applicant prior to visa filing.
  • For businesses requiring a start-up/acquisition cost over $3,000,000, no less that 35% of the funds should be invested by the applicant prior to visa filing.

An applicant should also avoid business that have been operating with minimal employees over several years. For example, owner run plus single employee business, even if generating sufficient revenue, will not make for a viable E-2 visa application. Additionally, business with high employees but low revenue or business that are “cash based” will be a good fit for an E-2 investor. 

How Long Can I Work in the United States on E-2 Status?

The visa is valid for an initial stay of two years. Request for an extension can be made indefinitely as long as the business is running and the visa holder is continuing to run the business. Each extension is valid for up to two years.

The E-2 visa does not lead directly to permanent residency, however, the visa can be extended indefinitely as long as the applicant is still working in or managing the business as there is no cap on duration. This time can prove a good opportunity for investors to make themselves eligible and apply for other immigration options that may have stricter requirements or longer wait times.

Can My Spouse and Children Live and Work in the United States?

The E-2 visa allows spouses and unmarried children under 21 to enter the United States with the principal applicant. Spouses are permitted to work in the same or different business once they have filed for work authorization (normally issued within 2-3 months). If they wish, they can also start their own business. Children can attend school, both public and private without hindrances.

Conclusion


The E-2 visa can be a great option for those that meet the country requirements and are looking to run a business temporarily or permanent in America. The E-2 typically has a lower investment requirement than the L-1 or EB-5 visas but does require the applicant to be more ‘hands on’ with the business. Coupled with other immigration visas, the E-2 can be a good foot hold for those looking to move to and live permanently in America.

 

L-1 Visa

L-1 visas are available to employees (including executive/managers) of an international company with offices in both the United States and abroad. Typically, owners will purchase an existing business in the U.S. and relocate themselves and their immediate family to America

EB-5 Visa

The EB-5 visa requires a minimum investment of $900,000 into a new or existing business. This allows the applicant and their immediate family to live in America and work in that business. There are no other requirements like the L-1 or E-2 visa.

Being able to learn about and purchase an L-1 business all under one roof has made the process simple

Johannes De Jager

L-1 Business Owner

immigrationeligiblebusinesses.com is great! I didn’t know we were eligible for these visas and to be able to search for the business that matches that eligibility is awesome!

Louise Carter

L-1 Business Owner

The E-2 visa has allowed me and my family to move to America and take advantage of the increased economy size which has taken my business to a whole new level

Michael Carey

E-2 Business Owner