Nonimmigrant Visas

An E-1 visa is a work visa that was established by treaty with certain enumerated foreign nations around the world. The purpose of the visa was to permit foreign workers to the United States and engage in trade. 

 

There are five key components here:

 

1.The applicant must be a citizen or national of a country that is a signatory to the treaty. (If you dont know this, you need only ask me). 

 

2.The investment enterprise itself is at least 50% owned by either the applicant or by citizens of the treaty company. (LPRs do not count.) 

 

3.The enterprise must be engaging in substantial trade with the treaty country. Substantial means:a.A continuous flow of international trade with treaty country.b.Cannot be based on isolated transaction.

 

4.International trade must be principally between US and treaty company - at least 50% of all of the companys international trade must be with the treaty company. 

 

5.The applicant is either the employer of the company, or a manager, executive, or employee with essential skills. 

 

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An E-2 visa is a work visa that was established by treaty with certain enumerated foreign nations around the world. The purpose of the visa was to permit investors to come to the United States, invest money into an enterprise here, and help to direct or develop the business here in an executive capacity. 

 

There are seven key components here: 

 

1.The applicant must be a citizen or national of a country that is a signatory to the treaty. (If you dont know this, you need only ask me.) 

 

2.The investment enterprise itself is at least 50% owned by either the applicant or by other citizens of the treaty country. (LPRs do not count.) 

 

3.The applicant has invested or is in the process of investing a substantial amount of capital into a commercial enterprise. The word substantial is extremely subjective, and there is no magic formula that they use to determine this. The magnitude of the investment is weighed against:

a.The total cost of purchasing or creating the enterprise.

b.The amount normally considered sufficient to ensure the investors financial commitment to the successful operation of the enterprise.

4.The capital must be in the sponsoring companys possession or control.  i.e. they must be at risk. 5.The commercial enterprise cannot be a passive investment (stocks, undeveloped property); it must be entrepreneurial in nature.

 

6.The enterprise cannot be marginal, meaning it must have a present or future capacity to generate more than just a minimal living for investor and his family. 

 

7.The applicant will be developing or directing the operations of the enterprise in which he is investing.

 

a.Duties are managerial or executive.

b.Has controlling interest in business  either 50% ownership, or operational control through management position.

 

The following is a list of documents and evidence that the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (U.S.C.I.S.) often requires to establish eligibility for an E visa. Some are necessary, some are simply recommended. If you are missing one or more of the following, please consult us and we will advise accordingly. 

 

The type of evidence we ask for is as follows: 

 

§Business Plan  It need not contain sensitive or proprietary information, but it should provide a proposed description of the business enterprise; goals and objectives to be obtained over the next year or so; and a plan as to how these goals and objectives will be accomplished. 

 

§Applicants Financial Statements  a statement of net worth, plus bank statements and tax returns. 

 

§Documents Pertaining to Formation and Ownership of Enterprise  certificate of incorporation, business license, state registration, joint-venture agreements, etc.

 

§Companys Financial Statements (if any) 

 

§Contracts, Invoices, Bills  or other documents showing company engaging in business, preparing to engage in business, or otherwise investing money into the enterprise 

 

§Commercial lease (w/ square footage of space) 

 

§Organizational Chart and/or List of Employees - including title and salaries 

 

§Brochure, Advertisement, Website - or other description of the companys activities as provided to clients or customers 

 

§Employment Contract  (if any) between applicant and company 

 

§Description of Applicants Proposed Duties 

 

§Copy of passport  include current visa and I-94, if any

Nonimmigrant work visas were established for people who want to enter the United States temporarily in order to work legally in a particular field. 

 

The key word is temporarily. They are distinguishable from green cards in that nonimmigrant work visas only give a finite period of time  usually from one to three years  at which point the visa holder is required to either extend/change his status, or go home. 

 

So why get a nonimmigrant work visa if it is only temporary? Because nonimmigrant visas have several advantages: 

 

  • They are substantially quicker to get, which is important when one is offered a position to commence within a month or two

 

  • They are usually cheaper to obtain

 

What follows are descriptions of the work visas that we most frequently get at our firm. This is not an exhaustive list, nor is it a substitute for legal advice, so please contact us if you have specific questions (please click on each for details).

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