The E-1 and E-2 visas are non-immigrant visas issued by the U.S. government to foreign citizens seeking to enter the U.S. to work temporarily. The E-1 is a Treaty Trader visa, while the E-2 is a Treaty Investor visa.
Treaty visas are based on treaties of commerce and navigation between the U.S. and certain countries, for a full list of countries for each E visa type please follow this link: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/fees/treaty.html.
Treaty Trader (E-1) or Treaty Investor (E-2) visa applicants must establish that the trading enterprise or investment enterprise meets the requirements of the law and complies with the many requirements for the E visa category. Under both visas the principal beneficiary is allowed to bring certain members of his family in derivative status (spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age), and the spouse of the E visa holder may also apply for a work authorization from USCIS.
The E-2 Treaty Investor visa allows the investor to live and work in the US to direct and develop a business. Employees that are also nationals of the same E2 visa Country as the investor may also qualify for an E-2 visa.
Applicants for an E-2 visa must provide documentation to establish:
E-2 visas can be issued for up to five years. These visas may be renewed indefinitely as there is no maximum renewal limit for E-2 visa holders. Extensions are often granted as long as the issuing US Embassy is satisfied that the business continues to meet the E-2 requirements.
The E-1 non-immigrant visa permits foreign nationals, key managerial and specialist employees from treaty countries to “develop and direct” imports and exports, a substantial amount of international trade, between the U.S. and the E-1 treaty country. The trade may be in the form of goods, services, or technology. The key for E-1 visas is that there must be a sufficient volume of trade to justify the presence of the E-1 visa holder in the U.S. to manage said trade. Additionally, the trader must have a past history of conducting trade between the US and the treaty country.
Applicants for an E-1 visa must provide documentation to establish: