Process

You wish to develop and direct operations of an enterprise in the United States in which you have invested or are actively investing substantial funds. You know that you are eligible but the process seems complicated. For your information, CLG has listed the steps in the process below.

  1. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)

    The petitioner (U.S. enterprise in which the foreign investor has invested) files a Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker with E Supplement (E-2 petition) on behalf of the foreign investor with the USCIS Service Center. After the E-2 petition is filed, the USCIS will issue a receipt notice. After reviewing the E-2 petition, the USCIS will issue a decision.

    Assuming that the foreign investor had previously entered the United States legally pursuant to a valid nonimmigrant visa; that the E-2 petition was filed and approved prior to the foreign investor’s expiration of stay in the United States; and that the foreign investor did not depart the United States during the approval process, s/he may begin employment upon issuance of the approval notice. If the foreign investor then leaves the United States after beginning employment s/he must file an E-2 application with the United States consulate.

    Timing: Currently, the Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker with E Supplement (form I-129) with request for a change of status is approved (on average) within 3-6 months of filing.

    *The Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker with E Supplement and request for a change of status may be filed along with a Premium Processing Request resulting in a decision being rendered in 15 calendar days

  2. Extension of Status in the United States by USCIS

    Assuming that the foreign investor had previously been issued an E-2 visa and that the new E-2 petition was filed prior to the expiration of the current E-2 visa, s/he may continue employment upon filing of the E-2 petition. If the foreign investor then leaves the United States after beginning employment and after approval of the E-2 petition, s/he must file an E-2 application with the United States consulate.

    Timing: Currently, the Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker with E Supplement (form I-129) with request for an extension of status is approved (on average) within 3-6 months of filing.

    *The Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker with E Supplement and request for an extension of status may be filed along with a Premium Processing Request resulting in a decision being rendered in 15 calendar days

  3. United States Embassy or Consulate

    If the foreign investor is outside the United States, s/he files an E-2 application directly with the United States consulate and presents a valid passport, confirmation of completion of form DS-160 and payment of the visa fee E-2 visa fees. The United States consulate conducts an interview. At the interview, the consular officer will verify that all required documentation has been provided. Second, and more importantly, the consular officer may question the foreign investor in detail with respect to the specifics of the position and the U.S. enterprise.

    If the consular officer is satisfied, the E-2 visa is approved and placed in the foreign investor’s passport. At that time, the United States embassy or consulate will also approve and place E-2 visa(s) in the foreign investor’s spouse and/or minor child(ren)’s passport(s).

    Timing: Currently, the scheduling of the interview depends on the individual United States

Additional Questions?

If you have additional questions about the E-2 visa process, you may wish to read our E-2 visa FAQs.