How Does the U.S. E2 Visa Function?
Many people and their families want to come to the U.S. to start a new life, and the E2 Visa is an excellent way to do that.
Essentially, the U. S. E2 Visa allows you, as the investor starting the business, to live and work in the US to set up, manage and develop a business, and also may allow your executive, management, and essentially skilled employees to do the same.
Suppose your business is already operational in another country and it’s large enough. In that case, specific management and executive-level employees may be sent to the US instead of you (as the owner) to begin and operate your start-up.
There are precise requirements to get an E2 Visa, and you must make a substantial investment to qualify. The law doesn’t state a specific dollar amount, but you should generally be prepared to invest at least $100,000 for your E2 Visa lawyer to present a solid visa case.
When your E2 Visa is granted, your spouse can also work for the E-2 business, start another company, or gain employment for another organization. However, various exemptions apply, such as high-security government-related jobs and jobs that specifically require US Citizenship. Your spouse’s employment also can be full or part-time.
As an E2 visa holder, you can usually spend up to 120 days in the US without being subject to worldwide income taxation.
In essence, your E2 Visa status is an excellent way to enter the U.S. and begin a new life for you and your family. However, it is a very detailed and challenging process and should only be attempted with the help of a qualified, professional Fresno E2 Visa lawyer.
What Are The Main Benefits Of An E2 Visa?
If you have the skills needed and investment funds available to set up your own business, there are some distinct advantages to a U.S. E2 Visa.
Some of these advantages are:
- You can work legally in the U.S. for your own company or a company you invested in – However, you must show that you will be developing and directing the E-2 visa investment. You can do this by having a 50% stake in the new or existing enterprise or having provable operational control through a high management position.
- There is no minimum investment requirement – The federal government does not specify an amount as a minimum or maximum investment for an E-2 visa. However, your investment must be substantial, and you must not be able to withdraw your funds.
- Your spouse can work under your E2 Visa – Your spouse can work by applying for a temporary work permit or employment authorization document (EAD). This commonly allows your spouse to work for your company or any other in the U.S. or start their own business.
- Your children can attend a school of your choice, and you can travel freely in and out of the U.S. – Your children under 21 can’t get a work visa, but they can pursue a higher education that will be accredited. Also, if your E-2 Visa is valid, you and your dependents can live outside of the United States for an undetermined amount of time and come and go as you please.
- Effectively, you can stay in the U.S. as long as your E2 Visa is valid – You can maintain your E-2 status for two-year increments but can request an extension of stay an unlimited number of times. If your extensions are approved, you can stay in the U.S. and don’t have to be a “green card” holder or U.S. citizen.
Your children and spouse are commonly granted the same period of stay as E-2 visa holders. They, too, however, will have to apply for extensions.
How Do I Begin to Apply For My E2 Visa?
First, you must know that this process is challenging and detailed and must be done right the first time. Consulting with a professional, thorough, and experienced Fresno E2 Visa lawyer is mandatory.
If you and your lawyer decide that an E-2 visa is the best way, they will start by filling out an I-129 form for non-immigrant workers. The time it takes to apply for an E-2 Visa primarily depends on whether you’re applying from inside the U.S. or out of the country. However, on average, it takes about six months to process.
Accordingly, outside the U.S., you must go through consular processing. You will then be required to travel to a predetermined U.S. consulate or embassy to participate in an interview with an immigration officer.
In this interview, you will be asked questions regarding your background, details about the business you plan to start or join, and all your pertinent plans. The consulate will determine if your case is legitimate and worthy of the E2 Visa.
Can I Convert an E2 Visa To a “Green Card?”
You must note that your E2 visa is not meant to offer a direct pathway to applying for your “Green Card.” Also, as the holder of an E2 Visa, you must not have had any intent to immigrate to the US when your visa was issued.
However, by discussing this thoroughly and at the appropriate time with your immigration lawyer, there are alternative routes that may allow E2 visa holders to switch to a path that gives them permanent U.S. residency. If handled correctly and professionally, these routes can provide you and your family with proven, legal ways of obtaining your green card or even U.S. citizenship.
Your professional and knowledgeable immigration lawyer will know how to approach this process, as each case and application will differ. If you have an E2 Visa and wish to begin the process of obtaining a green card, the help of your immigration law team will be invaluable.
I Wish To Obtain An E2 Visa; How Should I Proceed?
First, if you’re in the U.S., ensure you get the correct information from a knowledgeable source, such as your local immigration lawyer. Your law team will analyze all aspects of your case and ensure that your goals are clear and your application correct when you apply.
Your experienced and thorough Fresno E2 lawyer will fully know the procedure, necessary documents, and how to present your case successfully.
The best advice is to get professional guidance, as obtaining an E2 Visa is challenging, but your law team will be with you every step of the way.