Law requires that in order to become an E-1 nonimmigrant treaty trader the alien (1) will be in the US solely to carry on substantial, international trade, either on the alien’s behalf or as an employee of a foreign person or organization engaged in trade principally between the US and the treaty country of which the alien is a national, and (2) intends to depart the US upon the expiration or termination of treaty trader (E-1) status.
An alien may hold status as an E-2 nonimmigrant treaty investor if the alien (1) has invested or is actively in the process of investing a substantial amount of capital in a genuine enterprise in the US; (2) is seeking entry solely to develop and direct the enterprise; and (3) intends to depart the US upon the expiration or termination of E-2 treaty investor status.
Investment of a relatively small amount of capital in a marginal enterprise solely for the purpose of earning a living will not qualify under the E-2 visa regulation. Enterprise must actively engaged in business. While there are no set amounts for the investment, USCIS will evaluate the investment in light of the nature of the business enterprise, using number of guidelines and indicators.
Â In order to qualify as an E-1 treaty trader or E-2 treaty investor, the alien must also show (1) a treaty exists between the United States and the country of which the treaty enterprise is a “national”; (2) at least 50% ownership of the investing enterprise by nationals of the treaty country; and (3) citizenship in the treaty country by principal alien investors and employees of the enterprise seeking admission through the treaty enterprise.
An alien may also serve as an employee of a treaty investor or treaty trader if the employee is in or is coming to the United States as an executive or a supervisor, or, if employed in a lesser capacity, the employee has special qualifications that make the alien’s services essential to the efficient operation of the enterprise. The employee must have the same nationality as the principal alien employer.