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US E1, E2, and E3 Treaty Visas

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US E2 Treaty Investor Visa and E1 Treaty Trader visas overview

In many cases, it may be worth considering the E2 treaty investor or E1 treaty trader visa scheme.  Usually, under the E2 Visa or E1 Visa scheme the business needs to show that it is at least fifty percent owned by a national or nationals on the list of E2 Visa or E1 Visa Countries.  Both investors and employees.of the same nationality can come under these visa schemes. 

E2 treaty investor companies may be able to be registered under the E2 scheme with investments of tens of thousands of dollars or less.  This is a much smaller investment requirement than the minimum $500,000 required under the EB5 immigrant investor scheme.  You also do not need to employ many people in the US under the E2 Visa and E1 Visa schemes.  Once the business is registered under the E2 Visa or E1 Visa scheme E2 and E1 employee visas can be obtained much more cheaply and more quickly than say L1 or H1B visas.  E3 visas can only be applied for by Australians.

E2 Visa and E1 Visa Schemes only available to certain nationalities with relevant trade agreements with US

Over the years the United States has signed treaties of 'Friendship, Commerce and Navigation' with many Countries in the World which is a requirement to come under the E2 Treaty Investor Visa Scheme or E1 Treaty Trader Visa scheme. These treaties are designed to promote trade and investment between the USA and the other contracting state, as well as encouraging good relations between the US and the treaty Country.  The USA has also entered into a number of Bilateral Investment Treaties with many former communist states, designed to promote investment and trade; Nationals of many former Eastern Bloc Countries can come under the E2 Treaty Investor Visa scheme and E1 Treaty Trader visa scheme. 

Nationals of countries with such Treaties with the United States together with their employees can obtain visas to work in the USA in order to develop and direct their investment in and/or trade with the USA under the E-2 and E-1 visa schemes. There is also the E-3 visa which is meant for professional level Australians who have a job offer in the US:

  • E1 Treaty Trader For businesses and individuals engaged in substantial international trade between the US and the treaty trader country. The volume of trade must be sufficient to provide employment for a number of people in the United States and must constitute the majority of the trader's international trade.

  • E2 Treaty Investor For those who have made a significant investment in a US business in which the investor has at least a 50% ownership. The investment must be sufficient to provide employment for a number of people in the United States and must be in an active US business.  

  • E3 Certain Specialty Occupation Professionals for Australians For Australian nationals can come to the US to engage in a specialty occupation role. Applicants for this visa must have a bachelor's degree (or equivalent) or higher, and the job must be in a specialty occupation.

Further information, help, and advice's team of specialists has thirty years of experience in immigration services, and have helped thousands of people to study and work in the US. All applications for US visas are dealt with in-house by a US qualified lawyer that is also  typically a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).

For more information and advice on US immigration law and US visa applications please contact us on 0344 991 9222 or at