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E-2 Treaty Investor

E-2 Visa

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The E-2 Treaty Investor Visa is a valuable nonimmigrant visa category, specially crafted for individuals from countries with qualifying treaties with the United States. This visa serves as a unique avenue for foreign investors, granting them the opportunity to invest a substantial capital into a U.S. business enterprise and actively partake in its management.

In this guide, we embark on a comprehensive exploration of the E-2 Treaty Investor Visa, shedding light on its significance and the effective immigration legal services provided by Ochoa & Hill Law Group in Houston, Texas. Our mission goes beyond navigating the procedural aspects; we aim to provide thorough insights into E-2 Visa eligibility, the required forms, and the supporting documents necessary for a successful application process.


What is the E-2 Treaty Investor Visa?

The E-2 Treaty Investor Visa plays a crucial role in facilitating foreign investment in the United States. This nonimmigrant visa category offers a remarkable opportunity for investors from treaty countries to channel a substantial amount of capital into a U.S. business enterprise while actively participating in its management. It serves as a gateway to unlock investment opportunities and drive economic growth. To qualify, investors must make a substantial capital investment in a bona fide enterprise.

Who Qualifies for the E-2 Treaty Investor Visa?

The E-2 Treaty Investor visa is designed for individuals who are actively investing in and managing a U.S. business enterprise. Eligibility centers on the presence of a “substantial investment” and the applicant’s role within the business, which may be as a manager or executive. These individuals play a pivotal role in steering the success and growth of their U.S. businesses. The E-2 Treaty Investor visa is not just limited to owners of the treaty enterprise – employees may also qualify for an E-2 visa as well.

What are the Requirements for the E-2 Treaty Investor Visa?

Meeting the basic E-2 Visa requirements involves satisfying criteria outlined in the U.S. Department of State Foreign Affairs Manual1 (9 FAM 402.9). Key elements include:

  1. Treaty Country: A treaty of commerce exists between the U.S. and the E-2 treaty investor applicant’s country.
  2. Treaty National: The E-2 treaty investor possesses the nationality of the treaty country.
  3. Actual Investment: The applicant has invested or is in the process of investing in the treaty enterprise.
  4. Real Commercial Entity: The enterprise is a real and operating commercial entity.
  5. Substantial Investment: The investor’s contribution is substantial. There is no set minimum required to invest, but it should be proportional to the nature of the proposed investment enterprise.
  6. Marginality: The investment enterprise has the present and future capacity to generate enough income to provide more than a minimal living for the treaty investor and their family.
  7. Executive/Director Capacity: The investor is in a position to develop and direct the enterprise.

What Forms and Documents are Needed for the E-2 Visa?

If the E-2 Treaty Investor is applying outside of the United States, one of the primary forma required is Form DS-160, the Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application. Alongside this form, E-2 visa applicants must also provide supporting documentation to substantiate the substantial nature of the investment. In addition, when applying outside of the U.S., the E-2 treaty investor applicant may also need to submit other forms, depending on the requirements of their country’s consulate. For the most part, the vast majority of U.S. consulates across the globe will require similar documentation; however, every consulate has their own requirements and procedures as to how they will adjudicate their E-2 application. Some of these documents include:

  • A detailed business plan outlining the strategies and objectives of the U.S. business enterprise.
  • Concrete evidence of the substantial investment, showcasing the financial commitment and capital infusion.
  • Proof of the applicant’s qualifications and their pivotal role in the business as a manager or executive, highlighting their integral contribution to the business’s growth and success.

What are the E-2 Treaty Investor Countries?

Investors from various treaty countries, including Albania, Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Canada, and many more, can leverage the E-2 Visa opportunity. For a full list of E-2 Treaty Investor countries, visit List of E Treaty Visa Countries: Exploring Trade and Investment Opportunities in the U.S..

It’s important to note that the specific documentation requirements may vary based on the unique nature of the investment and the individual’s circumstances. Ochoa & Hill Law Group, based in Houston, Texas, is your unwavering partner, dedicated to guiding you through the E-2 Visa application process with skilled legal counsel. We are committed to helping foreign investors realize their investment opportunities in the United States, contributing to economic growth and success in the United States. Whether you’re a start-up entrepreneur or an experienced investor, we’re here to support your investment journey.

  1. U.S. Department of State Foreign Affairs Manual. Last Updated on October 5, 2023.
    9 FAM 402.9: TREATY TRADERS, INVESTORS, AND SPECIALTY OCCUPATIONS – E VISAS ↩︎

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Frequently Asked Questions


The E-2 Visa, known as the Treaty Investor Visa, allows individuals from treaty countries to invest a substantial amount of capital in a U.S. business and manage the business operations.

Eligibility requires being a citizen of a treaty country, making a substantial investment in a U.S. enterprise, and having a role in the business's management.

The investment must be significant enough to ensure the success of the business. There is no fixed amount, but it should be proportionate to the total cost of the business.

While the E-2 Visa itself does not directly lead to a green card, certain E-2 visa holders may be able to pursue permanent residency through other employment-based categories.

E-2 visa holders can generally stay in the U.S. as long as they maintain their treaty investor status and continue to operate the qualifying business.

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