Sunny Isles Beach E-2 Visa Attorney

One way for a foreign investor to gain entry to the U.S. as an immigrant is through an E-2 treaty investor visa. E-2 visas allow foreign nationals of countries with which the U.S. has a treaty agreement and who invest in a U.S. business enterprise to legally immigrate to the States. If you are considering immigration under an E-2 visa, an experienced Sunny Isles Beach immigration attorney can explain your options and guide you through the process.

Treaty Investors

To qualify to enter the U.S. under E-2 classification, an applicant, known as a treaty investor, must fulfill several requirements. He or she must:

  • Be a foreign national of a country that shares a treaty relationship with the U.S.;
  • Invest a substantial amount of capital in a bona fide business enterprise; and
  • Enter the U.S. for the purpose of developing and directing the business.

Qualified Employees

In some cases, the treaty investor’s employees may also be eligible to immigrate using an E-2 visa. In order to immigrate as a treaty investor’s employee, the employee must:

  • Share the treaty investor’s nationality;
  • Be the employee of the treaty investor; and
  • Have executive or supervisory duties or special qualifications.

Bona Fide Enterprises

To qualify for an E-2 visa, the treaty investor may either start a new business enterprise or acquire an existing company. However, there are some requirements for an enterprise to qualify. The business must be a legitimate enterprise, producing goods or services for profit, and the income derived from the business must be non-marginal. Idle or passive investments do not suffice for this requirement.

Further, the treaty investor is required to direct and develop the business. To demonstrate the capacity to do so, the treaty investor must either own at least 50 percent of the business or must have managerial and operational control.


Investment in a business for the purpose of obtaining an E-2 visa has several requirements. First, the treaty investor’s investment of capital must be substantial. What constitutes a substantial investment is not explicitly defined, but investments of $100,000 or more are generally sufficient. Further, the investment amount must represent a substantial portion of the cost of starting or purchasing a business. The substantial investment requirement ensures that the treaty investor is dedicated to the enterprise and will develop the business.

Additionally, the capital investment must be at risk. This means that the money is irrevocably committed to the business and may be lost in the event that the business is not successful. The capital must be the treaty investor’s own money, and must not be the product of criminal activity.

Work Conditions

A treaty investor living in the U.S. may not work in any other area than that for which the E-2 visa was approved. Employees of the treaty investor, however, may work in either a parent company or subsidiary as long as they exercise executive, supervisory, or essential skills, and the terms and conditions of employment have not changed.

Duration and Family

E-2 visas grant an initial stay lasting two years, but treaty investors may request extensions. However, they must demonstrate their intent to return to their home countries after the visa’s expiration. If a treaty investor goes abroad, he or she will automatically be granted a two-year readmission period after returning to the U.S. Treaty investors may bring spouses and children under age 21 with them under E-2 visas.

If you are considering immigrating to the U.S. under an investor visa, please contact the Law Offices of Alex T. Barak to schedule a free initial consultation at our convenient Aventura or Hollywood offices with a Sunny Isles Beach E-2 Visa Attorney .