The E-2 nonimmigrant classification allows a national of a treaty country (a country with which the United States maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation) to be admitted to the United States when investing a substantial amount of capital in a U.S. business. Certain employees of such a person or of a qualifying organization may also be eligible for this classification. Dependent family members may also qualify

See U.S. Department of State’s Treaty Countries for a current list of countries with which the United States maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation.

How to Obtain E-2 Classification if Outside the United States

E-2 Classification may be obtained from either inside the U.S. (if applicant is currently in lawful status) or applied from outside the U.S. at an American consular post.



General Qualifications of a Treaty Investor

To qualify for E-2 classification, the treaty investor must:

  • Be a national of a country with which the United States maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation
  • Have invested, or be actively in the process of investing, a substantial amount of capital in a bona fide enterprise in the United States
  • The investment enterprise may not be marginal
  • Be seeking to enter the United States solely to develop and direct the investment enterprise. This is established by showing at least 50% ownership of the enterprise or possession of operational control through a managerial position or other corporate device.

Period of Stay

Visa reciprocity must be checked for each country that participates in the E-2 Treaty Visa program. Visas are typically 5 years long with Periods of Stays for two years.

Terms and Conditions of E-2 Status

A treaty investor or employee may only work in the activity for which he or she was approved at the time the classification was granted

Family of E-2 Treaty Investors and Employees

Treaty investors and employees may be accompanied or followed by spouses and unmarried children who are under 21 years of age.

For more information on E-2 visas, go to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website.