For foreign nationals who would like to invest and move their family to the United States, an E-2 Investment visa is available to nationals of countries with an investment treaty with the United States. The list of treaty countries can be located on the U.S. State Department website.
An E-2 visa is a path for foreign nationals without a U.S. family sponsor or a U.S. employer sponsor to temporarily live in the United States. The primary requirement is that the foreign national has money to invest and is capable of running the business operation. The United States welcomes foreign nationals who are willing to start new business or invest in an existing one and create new jobs for U.S. residents.
Applying for an E-2 visa is complicated process and should be completed with the guidance of an experienced professional. There is no minimum investment requirement but the closer the investment amount to $100,000 or more the greater the chance of approval. (To start your E-2 investment visa application, follow this link.)
The amount invested must be in the control of the investor and the investor must bear the risk of business failure. The investor can use their personal assets to get a loan to fund the investment but they cannot use the business assets to secure the loan.
The additional benefits for E-2 visa holders is that the spouses of the primary E-2 visa holders can apply for employment authorization and can work without restrictive conditions in the United States. Children under 21 of E-2 status holders have similar educational benefits as U.S. residents. The children have the opportunity to enter public schools similar to U.S. resident unless restricted by state law or school requirements.
Once the investor enters the United States on an E-2 investment visa, they can remain in the United States for up to two years. The E-2 investment status can be extended in two year increments as long as the qualified investment enterprise is still in operation as outlined in the initial submission and the E-2 status holder has not violated the terms of the status. There are no limits in the number of extensions an E-2 status holder can file.