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If you can invest at least $100,000 in a U.S. business, the E2 visa may be for you.

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in the United States

Work opportunities
for your spouse

Children under 21
can study

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Who is the E2 Investor Visa program for?

The E-2 treaty Investor visa program is a nonimmigrant visa reserved for foreign entrepreneurs from countries that have a trade agreement with the United States. The E-2 investor visa allows foreign investors to work in the United States by making a substantial investment in a bona fide company.

Why do our clients choose us?

For decades, Bovino Law Group’s immigration, international business, and trademark law services have helped foreign entrepreneurs and migrants overcome a wide range of obstacles to achieve and live their American dream.

Let us clear a path to your American Dream and help you seize your golden opportunity for success and happiness in the United States!

Mauricio Osorno


Excellent law firm, they helped me with my Visa process and they are really good. They also helped me with the establishment of my company in the United States.

Joe Bovino is a very good person and an excellent attorney. 100% recommended.

Domingo Soto


Their attention, active support, and warm communication allow you to have enough peace of mind to develop your investment. The commitment shown by Bovino Law Group P.A., gives me the confidence to RECOMMEND them in the process to obtain an E2 visa and to set up a company in the USA.

Lara Skidelsky


Mr. Bovino helped me with my E2 visa giving me excellent advise. He answered all my questions and picked up the phone every time I called him. Highly recommended.

Benefits of the E2 Investor Visa

The E-2 investor visa has many benefits for foreign entrepreneurs, including:

One of the main advantages of the E-2 Visa is that you can legally conduct business in the United States and also be an employee of that company. Whether the company is pre-existing or just getting started, it is important that you play a vital role in the business. 

The US government does not specifically set a minimum or maximum amount for an E-2 Visa investment. However, the invested amount must be substantial and you should not be able to withdraw your funds.

The definition of a substantial amount is not quantified by US government regulations. However, the general rule is that the capital investment must be proportionate to the nature of the business. As a result, while some E-2 visa applicants have been approved despite investing less than US$100,000 (particularly, in service industries), it is a risky strategy. Most E-2 visa applicants invest at least US$100,000 to US$200,000 and some invest more (in certain manufacturing businesses, for example) if that is what is needed to demonstrate that their business is likely to survive and thrive.

This is because the US government aims to approve businesses and grant E-2 visas to investors that will have a positive and significant impact on the US economy. Businesses that require less investment are considered marginal and are not considered to have a significant economical impact.  

Spouses of E-2 investors can work in the United States by applying for a temporary work permit or an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). This allows the spouse to work for any company in the United States or start their own business.

One can apply for an EAD by filling out a Form I-765 for a fee. If approved, there are no specific restrictions as to where the E-2 spouse can work. Generally, spouses are granted the same stay period as the E-2 visa holder. By completing a Form I-539, they may also submit an extension of stay in an E-2 dependent classification.

Children under 21 may not qualify for a work visa, but they can pursue higher education and it will be credited. Then, they can then apply for other nonimmigrant visas to work after getting a degree.

Generally, children would need to apply for an F-1 visa that only allows them to attend the school where the visa was approved. However, there are many more options with an E-2 dependent visa.

Once the child has turned 21, they can no longer stay in the United States under an E-2 dependent visa. Then, they will have to apply for their own visa, which will allow them to remain in the United States to continue school and/or begin working.  

As long as your E-2 treaty trader visa is valid, foreign investors and their dependents have the option to live outside the United States for an indeterminate period of time and may enter and leave whenever they wish.

E-2 visa holders keep their E-2 status in two-year increments and may apply for an extension of stay as many times as they wish. Basically, you can reside and conduct business in the United States for the time your extensions are approved. You can do this without being a green card holder or a US citizen.

Since children and spouses are often granted the same period of stay as E-2 visa holders, they need to apply for an extension too. To remain in the United States, this must be done prior to the expiration of their E-2 dependent visa.

According to USCIS, holders of E-2 treaty trader visas may apply for an extension of stay if:

They were lawfully admitted to the United States under a nonimmigrant visa.
Their nonimmigrant visa status is still valid.
They have not committed any crimes that would make them ineligible for a visa.
They have not violated their admission requirements. 
Their passport is valid and will remain so for the duration of their stay.  

Eligibility Requirements for the E2 Investor Visa

To qualify for the E-2 investor visa, you must meet the following 6 eligibility requirements:

  • You must be a citizen of a country that has entered into a treaty of commerce and navigation with the United States.
  • You must have invested or be actively in the process of investing in a bona fide company in the United States.
  • Your investment must be "substantial."
  • You may not invest in a "marginal" company.
  • You must file an application to enter the United States solely to "direct and develop" the business, and be able to do so well.
  • You must intend to leave the United States upon the expiration of your visa. (But you can renew it indefinitely).

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Frequently Asked Questions

As an E-2 investor, you may obtain an E-2 derivative visa for your spouse and any children under the age of 21.

Your spouse may also apply for an Employment Authorization Document (“EAD”) to work in the United States after receiving the E-2 status, and may work at any job of their choice, including, but not limited to, your business. Your children cannot work in the United States, but can attend any school in the United States that accepts them. 

The short answer is no. However, as long as your E-2 business continues to operate in the United States, you can renew your E-2 visa indefinitely every 5 years (or when it expires). In practical terms, that means that your E-2 Visa can last a lifetime. It may not expire until it does.

After staying and working in the United States for a while, you may find that you qualify for a green card in another category (e.g., EB-5). However, you should proceed with caution when it comes to the assistance of an immigration lawyer, as you do not want to be accused of violating the terms of your E-2 visa by not intending to return to your home country upon its expiration. It should be clear that you did not intend to apply for a green card during the E-2 Visa period. You simply took advantage of the opportunity presented to you to apply for one.  

No, the E-2 Visa does not require you to invest a specific amount. Such amount only needs to be substantial in relation to the business. There is another visa called the EB-5 Visa which requires a minimum investment of US$900,000, and it is a good option for some investors who can afford it and want the Green Card, but it is completely different from the E-2 Visa. 

Yes, you can borrow money and use the income as part of your investment, as long as you are personally responsible for the loan’s repayment and your business is not overly leveraged.  

To obtain an E-2 Visa, you are not legally required to invest a minimum of US$100,000 to US$200,000 or any other specific amount of money.

If the business you are investing in is a service business (e.g., a marketing or consulting company), the US government will generally require a much smaller amount of investment capital than if your business were to manufacture products, especially if the manufacturing process is complex and capital intensive.

In short, E-2 Visa applicants must generally invest at least US$100,000 to US$200,000 to obtain visa approval, but there are exceptions. It depends on the nature of the business you want to launch and manage, and the quality of your business plan.

You are not legally required to hire a specific number of US workers for your business, but you should expect and plan to hire at least some US employees for your business to operate and make significant profits over time.

If your business plan calls for the creation of jobs and wealth in the United States, the US government will consider you in a much more favorable light during the E-2 Visa application process. If it does not, or if the only employees will be you and a family member, the US government will likely consider your business “marginal” and, as such, unacceptable.

You do not need to hire and pay any US workers prior to receiving your E-2 Visas, but your E-2 Visa business plan should outline exactly when you will do so and what the terms will be.

You must submit a persuasive 5-year business plan to the US government along with your E-2 Visa application. They will examine it closely. Therefore, it must be rock-solid. We work with several companies that specialize in helping E-2 Visa investors with business plans that give the US government what they are looking for in this kind of document.

If your business plan calls for the creation of jobs and wealth in the United States, the US government will consider you in a much more favorable light during the E-2 Visa application process. If it does not, or if the only employees will be you and a family member, the US government will likely consider your business “marginal” and, as such, unacceptable.

You do not need to hire nor pay any US workers before you receive your E-2 Visas, but your E-2 Visa business plan should outline exactly when you will do so and what the terms will be.  

E-2 Visa regulations exclude real estate investments. stocks and similar “inactive” companies, as well as non-profit organizations. They require you to start a new business or purchase an existing one by making a substantial investment, keeping it active, running its operations and earning money over an extended period of time.

The E-2 visa process is relatively lengthy and complicated, and you will have a large amount of money at risk. You should hire a qualified immigration attorney to ensure that you have taken all necessary steps, complied with all relevant regulations and requirements, and submitted your E-2 visa application and supporting documents to the US government to have the best chance of success. In addition, your investment in legal services can and should be considered for the investment required to start your US business.

The process of investing in your new US business or buying an existing one can take many months, often 6 months or more, even before your E-2 visa application and bulky supporting documents are prepared and sent to the US government. Upon submission of the E-2 visa application documents, the receiving US consulate must process and review everything. Processing time varies from country to country, but generally takes 2-3 months and perhaps longer, depending on the circumstances.

Contact us to receive a quote on legal fees for the E-2 visa process depending on your specific situation and circumstances.

Legal fees and costs vary, for example, depending on whether you plan to include family members, employees or other investors in the process.  

To dramatically improve your likelihood of success with the E-2 visa process, we recommend that you hire a US immigration attorney who will give your application the time and attention it requires. The E-2 visa process is relatively long, complicated and involves a lot of paperwork, but it can still be enjoyable, cost-effective, and, ultimately, life-changing if you have the right people on your team to make it a success.


Joseph Bovino, Esq.

Your specialist consultant for Investor Visas in the USA.

I use my rights, talents and opportunities to pursue the American dream and help others do the same.

That’s what my law firm, Bovino Law Group, is all about. We guide you through the US legal system and clear a path to your American dream.

I have been an attorney for over 30 years in Florida and California. I am also a 5x #1 bestselling author, global legal recruiter, and a cast member in a well-known home exercise program called P90X.

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