International Investors

Treaty Investment Visa (E2)

If you have a dream of becoming an entrepreneur, you make it come true by Treaty Investment visa/status (E2). With E2 visa/status, you can stay in the US doing a business you dreamed to do. The status is valid for two years and has to be renewed in every two years.

If I want to do
-my own start-up company with my colleagues, or

-my own small business (i.g., restaurant, café, professional offices (lawyer, CPA, doctor’s, etc), beauty supplies, day care center, publishers, online trade, and so on)

then, E2 can be a right solution for you!

Eligibility: who can apply for E2 visa/status?

  1. Substantial Amount of Investment

There is no fixed amount of investment fund in the regulations. The investor must be able to show that he/she has already invested a substantial amount of investment fund for the business or are in the process of investing.

  1. Traceable Source of Investment Fund

All the investment fund should be traceable to prove that it came from legitimate source.

  1. No marginal Business

Investor must prove that the business is not a marginal business. A marginal enterprise is an enterprise that does not have the present or future capacity to generate more than enough income to provide a minimal living for the treaty investor and his or her family. An enterprise that does not have the capacity to generate such income but that has a present or future capacity to make a significant economic contribution is not a marginal enterprise. The projected future capacity should generally be realizable within five years from the date the alien commences normal business activity of the enterprise.

  1. Solely to develop and direct.

The business or individual treaty investor does or will develop and direct the enterprise by controlling the enterprise through ownership of at least 50% of the business, by possessing operational control through a managerial position or other corporate device, or by other means.

  1. Executive or supervisory character.

The executive or supervisory element of the employee’s position must be a principal and primary function of the position and not an incidental or collateral function. Executive and/or supervisory duties grant the employee ultimate control and responsibility for the enterprise’s overall operation or a major component thereof.

  1. Bona Fide Enterprise

Investor must prove that your company is a bona fide enterprise. But, good thing is that there is no restriction on a type of the business you choose to do as long as it is in good faith company.

International Entrepreneur Parole Program

Recently, Biden administration announced to revive International Entrepreneur Program in 2021. This program, shorted for IEP, is to encourage foreign entrepreneurs to create and develop start-up entities with high growth potential in the US, which are expected to facilitate research and development in the country, development in the county, creates jobs for US workers, and otherwise benefit the U.S economy.

This parole allows:

– the entrepreneurs to stay for 30 months which is extendable for another 30 months
– it’s Spouse to apply for work authorization and
– their Children to attend a public school.

Any one who is already in the U.S cannot change his/her status to IEP. They must leave the US and come back with the IEP status.

Entrepreneurs apply for parole under this rule must demonstrate that they:

-Possess a substantial ownership interest in a start-up entity created within the past five years in the United States that has substantial potential for rapid growth and job creation.

• Have a central and active role in the start-up entity such that they are well-positioned to substantially assist with the growth and success of the business.

• Will provide a significant public benefit to the United States based on their role as an entrepreneur of the start-up entity by showing that:

o The start-up entity has received a significant investment of capital from certain qualified U.S. investors with established records of successful investments;

o The start-up entity has received significant awards or grants for economic development, research and development, or job creation (or other types of grants or awards typically given to start-up entities) from federal, state, or local government entities that regularly provide such awards or grants to start-up entities; or

o They partially meet either or both of the previous two requirements and provide additional reliable and compelling evidence of the start-up entity’s substantial potential for rapid growth and job creation.

• Otherwise merit a favorable exercise of discretion.

Lastly, this program may be a good alternative to those whose H1b/OPT was not selected or denied and/or who is not allowed or affordable to apply for E2 status. If you would like to know more about this program, please contact us at 847-660-4233 (English, Korean) or 317-701-2768 (Mandarin).