E-1 and E-2 Visas Treaty Traders & Treaty Investors

Who qualifies for an E-1 Treaty Trader Visa?

A person may be issued an E-1 Treaty Trader visa if:

  • The individual or the company has the nationality of the treaty country (at least half of the company must be owned by nationals of the treaty country)
  • There is substantial trade (more than 50 percent of the company’s international trade) between the U.S. and the treaty country. “Trade” includes the exchange, purchase, or sale of goods or services; the transfer of technology; and binding contracts that call for the immediate exchange of items of trade. Such trade must be continuous and ongoing.
  • The individual is either the principal trader who is coming to the U.S. to engage in substantial trade, or an executive, manager, or employee with special skills essential to the company.

Who qualifies for an E-2 Treaty Investor Visa?

A person may be issued an E-2 Treaty Investor visa if:

  • The individual or the company has the nationality of the treaty country (at least half of the company must be owned by nationals of the treaty country)
  • The individual or the company has made or is in the process of making a substantial capital investment (relative to the total value of the company) in a bona fide business enterprise in the U.S.
  • The individual is either the principal investor who will direct and develop the enterprise, or an executive, supervisor, or employee whose services are essential to the efficient
    operation of the U.S. company.
  • The investment has the present or future capacity to generate more than enough income to provide minimal living for the investor and his or her family, or has a present of future
    capacity to make a significant economic contribution.

How long can E visa holders remain in the U.S.?

  • E visas are generally issued for five years. Extensions of stay in the U.S. may be granted for up to two years at a time from the appropriate U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) service center.
  • An E visa may be reissued for up to five years at the home consulate with submission of appropriate documentation establishing the ongoing trade or continuing operation of the
    business investment enterprise. The spouse or children of E visa holder do not require treaty country nationality. Children may attend school and spouses in E status are eligible to apply for an employment authorization document .

Lists of countries that have treaties for E-1 visas and of countries that have treaties for E-2 visas are available here .

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