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Foreign investors and traders who contribute to businesses and other commercial enterprises in the United States may be eligible to temporarily immigrate to or enter the US with an E-1 treaty trader or E-2 treaty investor visa. Similarly, executives, managers, and employees with specialized knowledge may obtain a L-1A or L-1B visa for intercompany transfers within the U.S. Both of these visa types are for temporary workers seeking to fulfill certain requirements before returning to their home countries.
E-1/E-2 Treaty Trader/Treaty Investor Visas
E visas were created for temporary entries or stays within the US for the purposes of commerce between the visa holder’s country of origin. Under an E-1 visa, a treaty trader is defined as someone who conducts “substantial trade in goods, services, and technology” between the United States and their country of origin. Treaty investors, under the E-2 visa, invest a “substantial amount of money” to an enterprise within the U.S.
To be eligible for these visas, an applicant must fulfill the following requirements:
- Be a foreign national of a country that the U.S. has a commerce treaty with;
- Maintain continuous trade involving numerous transactions or invest a substantial amount of money into a legitimate U.S. enterprise; and
- Meet the legal definition of an employee, manager, executive, or have special qualifications.
Applicants may seek and E-1 or E2 visa to enter the U.S. specifically to carry on trade or establish and develop investment opportunities.
Additional requirements and specific details vary depending on several factors. Get in touch with us today to determine your eligibility and application requirements.
L Visas for Temporary Intracompany Transferees
L-1A and L-1B nonimmigrant visas are designed for managers and executives, as well as employees with specialized knowledge, to transfer to the U.S. for to work. These visas begin with a U.S. employer filing a petition with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on behalf of the employee, manager, or executive. They may be issued to help establish a new office; transfer a manager or executive from an affiliated office located outside of the U.S.; or transfer an employee with expertise in a company’s services, products, processes, or other pertinent information regarding the company’s business dealings.
To qualify for L-1 visas, a potential transferee must:
- Have worked at the company for one continuous year within the three years before they are admitted to the U.S.
- Want to seek entry to the U.S. on behalf of the same company or a qualifying affiliate as a manager, executive, or employee with specialized knowledge.
EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program
Foreign investors who make significant contributions to businesses and other commercial enterprises in the United States may be eligible for permanent residency through the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program (or simply the EB-5 Program). This program was designed in 1990 to stimulate the U.S. economy and promote job growth.
The EB-5 Program presents a pathway for foreign investors, their spouses, and unmarried children under 21 to achieve permanent residency. In most cases, foreign investors first become conditional permanent residents, but they can adjust their status to lawful permanent residents after two years, so long as they meet certain criteria.
EB-5 investors must meet the following conditions to qualify for lawful permanent residency:
- Invest capital (cash, tangible assets, etc.) in one or more new for-profit commercial enterprises in the United States, including sole proprietorships, corporations, business trusts, LLCs, and so forth. This includes investments made through approved EB-5 regional centers.
- Invest the minimum amount of capital into the U.S. commercial enterprise
- The invested capital must create at least 10 permanent full-time positions.
Invested capital cannot include any assets that were acquired unlawfully or assets that must be repaid to the investor.
At Magnolia Immigration Law, we are committed to helping temporary workers and U.S. businesses through thorough communication, assistance with document preparation, and keeping up with application statuses by quickly responding to new inquiries or requests.
Our extensive experience in immigration will serve as a huge asset to you and your loved ones as you work on joining the many immigrants who have called the U.S. their home. Fill out our contact form or call (321) 558-2555 to schedule a consultation.