Free Complete E2 Visa Checklist

The complete E2 Visa checklist. Learn what is E2 visa, how to apply for it, its advantages and disadvantages.

What to do if you apply at the US embassy or with USCIS from the US

What is the E2 Visa?

The E2 visa, also known as the Treaty Investor Visa, is a nonimmigrant visa category issued to foreign entrepreneurs and investors who wish to establish a new business venture or purchase and manage a pre-existing enterprise in the United States. The applicant must invest substantial capital into the U.S. business and must be a citizen of a country with which the U.S. maintains an E2 visa treaty.

The E2 visa serves as a temporary visa option and does not replace an immigrant visa. E2 visa holders are granted the ability to travel in and out of the United States for a period of two years. Furthermore, they have the opportunity to renew their E2 visa indefinitely, with each renewal lasting for an additional two years, as long as their business continues to operate and fulfills all E2 visa criteria.

What are the E2 Visa Requirements for Investors?

Investors must meet the following six key E2 visa requirements to qualify:

  • The applicant (a person or a company) must be a national of a country that maintains a Treaty of Commerce and Navigation with the United States. The list of countries with qualifying treaties with the U.S. can be found here.
  • The applicant must own at least 50% of the U.S. company and be in an executive, supervisory, or managerial position.
  • The applicant must either have invested or be ready to make a substantial investment in the U.S. company. While U.S. government regulations do not specify the minimum amount of investment, it is recommended that applicants invest a minimum of \$100,000 to \$200,000. This is to ensure their financial commitment to the enterprise’s success. In exceptional cases, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) may approve applications with investment amounts as low as $50,000.
  • The applicant must have control of the investment funds, and investments made with the U.S. company must be at risk of capital loss in the commercial sense.
  • The U.S. company must be a bona fide and non-marginal U.S. business, which means it is an active, for-profit enterprise that produces goods or services, generates sufficient income, and contributes to the regional U.S. economy by creating jobs for U.S. workers. The business must also operate from a dedicated premise.
  • The applicant must intend to depart from the U.S. and return to their home country once their E2 status ends.
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E2 Visa Eligible Countries

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Treaty countries for visa E2

Below is the list of countries with an E2 visa treaty:

Albania, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brunei, Bulgaria, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Egypt, Estonia, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Grenada, Honduras, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Liberia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Republic of Congo, Romania, Senegal, Serbia, Singapore, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad & Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and Yugoslavia.

What if my country is not part of treaty countries?

Unfortunately, you can not apply for E2 visa directly. However, there is a way to get one by applying for a dual citizenship in countries such as Grenada or Turkey. Once you apply for citizenship by investment in one of those countries, you will be eligible to apply for E2 visa. This path way is done by many individuals from nontreaty countries such as China and India. If you want to learn more about how it works, you can read it here

Can Employees Also Qualify for an E2 Visa?

Yes, employees of an investor can also qualify for an E2 visa provided that they fulfill a set of E2 requirements. To be eligible, a sponsored employee must:

  • have the same nationality as the investor applicant,
  • occupy a supervisory or managerial position and be essential to the U.S. company’s operations,
  • meet the definition of “employee” under the U.S. legal code, and
  • intend to return to their country of residence once their work in the U.S. is completed.

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What Is the Application Process for Visa E2?

E2 Visa Checklist: United States Consulate Process (Applying from outside the U.S.)

Applying for an E2 visa involves several steps, which may vary depending on the specific U.S. Embassy or Consulate where investors choose to apply. However, the general application process is as follows:

1. Complete the DS-160 or Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application Form: Investors outside the U.S. need to accurately and truthfully fill out the DS-160 Form, available on the Consular Electronic Application Center website. This form collects personal information, contact details, passport details, travel history, and educational/work experience. Applicants must also upload a suitable photograph and answer security-related questions. Once completed, a confirmation page should be printed and brought to the interview.

2. Pay the application fee: The E2 visa application fee is $205. Applicants may also be required to pay additional fees, such as visa issuance fees, upon approval.

3. Schedule an appointment for the E2 visa interview: Interviews can be scheduled at any U.S. Embassy or Consulate, but it may be more challenging to qualify for a visa outside one’s home country. Applicants aged 13 to 80 must attend a visa interview. It is advisable to schedule the interview as early as possible, considering the varying wait times based on location and season.

4. Prepare the required documents: Applicants must gather and prepare the necessary documents for the E2 visa interview. The following checklist provides an overview of the required documents:

– Form DS-160 confirmation page
– Valid passport
– Payment receipt for the $205 application fee
– Two full-face color photographs adhering to U.S. visa photo requirements
– Form DS-156E (for executive, managerial, or essential employee roles)
– Curriculum vitae or proof of academic and qualifying credentials
– Evidence of business establishment and operation in the U.S.
– Business licenses and registration documents
– Financial and tax-related records
– Organizational and staffing charts
– Contracts with employees and customers
– Vendor agreements
– Evidence of substantial investment in the U.S.
– Bank statements, titles, receipts, and business tax returns
– Signed contracts and actual purchases
– Business plan
– Proof of intent to return to the home country (e.g., offer letter, property-related documents, birth/marriage certificates, personal assets/income, and other relevant evidence)

5. Attend the E2 visa interview: A consular officer will conduct the interview to assess the applicant’s purpose and intention for entering the U.S. They will determine if the applicant meets the legal requirements for the E2 visa category and has demonstrated an intent to return to their home country.

Following the interview, applicants will receive notification from the consular officer regarding any additional administrative processing requirements and the process for returning their passport with the visa.

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Applying Process From Within The United States

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Domestic USCIS Process

If individuals already have a nonimmigrant status while in the U.S., they have the option to request a change of status to obtain an E2 visa. To do so, they must submit Form I-129 (Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker) to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

The processing time for an E2 visa application typically averages around five months, but it can vary depending on various factors. For expedited processing within fifteen calendar days, applicants also have the choice to pay a premium processing fee of $1,225.

Upon receiving the application, the USCIS will review it and make a decision to either approve or deny the request. If further evidence is needed, the USCIS may issue a Request for Additional Evidence (RFE) to the applicant. Once the additional evidence is submitted, the USCIS will make a final decision within fifteen days. If the request is approved, the applicant will receive Form I-797 (Approval Notice).

What are the E2 Visa benefits?


Aside from working legally for the company that is the applicant’s investment vehicle in the U.S., below are the other advantages of having an E2 visa:

Employee sponsorship

Employees from the E2 visa holder’s country can be sponsored to come to work in the U.S. once the business has been established.

Dependents of E2 visa holders can join them

The E2 visa covers the applicant’s spouse and children under 21 years old. Dependents can apply at the same time as the primary visa holder or later on.

Free education in U.S. public schools 

Children dependents under the age of 21 may not qualify for a work visa, but they can attend any public school for free. They may also qualify for in-state tuition at state universities.

The spouse of an E2 visa holder can work anywhere in the U.S.

The E2 spouse may obtain employment in any U.S. state and at any company by applying for a temporary work permit or employment authorization document (EAD). The spouse is also granted the same duration of stay as the E2 visa holder.

120 days of taxation relief

E2 visa holders are guaranteed 120 days of income tax relief in the U.S. This is one of the key advantage of having an E2 visa.

Convenient travel and indefinite visa renewal

E2 visa holders can prolong their status for unlimited two-year increments as long as the business concerned maintains operations. The primary visa holder and dependents can also freely travel in and out of the U.S. as they please.

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E2 Visa Downside

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While the E2 visa offers many great benefits, it also has its downside.

  • E2 visas are limited to nationals of countries having trade treaties with the U.S. (see list above).
  • The visa holder is restricted to work for the company that is part of the investment.
  • E2 visa to green card can be achieved by changing from nonimmigrant visa to immigrant visa.


What happens if my E2 Visa gets denied?

In the event that your visa application is rejected, immigration officials will provide you with a clear reason for the rejection. Numerous factors play a role in the success of your visa application, including your demeanor during the interview, the strength of your business plan, and the thoroughness of your documentation. As an investment visa, there are inherent risks involved, and engaging the services of a competent lawyer can assist you in mitigating these risks. Lawyers have the expertise to add provisions to your agreements that offer protection in the event of unforeseen circumstances.

At, we offer services to help you achieve the American dream. Take the first step to by consulting with us here or emailing us. Our consultancy is free of charge. 

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