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Everything You Need to Know About E2 Visa vs. EB-5 Visa

    Are you an entrepreneur or an investor aspiring to establish and run a business in the United States? If so, you have two viable routes - E2 Visa vs. EB-5 Visa; however, they come with diverging requirements and lead to different residency outcomes.

    The E-2 investment visa permits you to work and reside in the US for a defined number of years, making it ideal for individuals not wishing to move permanently. Alternatively, if you are seeking a US investment visa that ultimately leads to a Green Card and lawful permanent residency, you might want to explore the EB-5 alternative.

    Not sure which US investor visa is right for you? Continue reading this article, where we examine the key distinctions between the two.


    Who Is Eligible for the E-2 Visa, and What Is the Criteria?

    Foreign nationals of 70 countries are eligible for the E-2 visa through the E-2 treaty. These countries include Canada, Ireland, South Korea, and Morocco, to name a few, but you can find the complete list of countries here. In order to obtain an E-2 visa, you must invest in a US business.

    To apply for this US investor visa, you must complete the visa application and submit a formal business plan, in which you must outline your venture’s strategy and present your skills and experience.

    The E-2 visa is intended to entice entrepreneurs to the US and create jobs for US citizens. While there is no set minimum investment, it must be substantial enough to gain at least 50% ownership of the chosen business. The initial period granted is two years; therefore, applicants must show intent to leave the US, although the visa can be extended.

    Which ventures can you invest in, you may wonder? As long as you meet the E-2 Visa criteria, you can invest in virtually any business. This means that, whatever your area of interest or expertise, if you have the capital and the entrepreneurial spirit, you could be a candidate.


    What Is the EB-5 Visa, and How Does It Differ From the E-2?

    The EB-5 visa is similar to the E-2 but may be better if you want to live in the US long-term. This particular visa does have a minimum investment limit, which varies depending on whether you choose a business inside or outside the Targeted Employment Area. It also requires you to create or preserve ten full-time jobs for US citizens.

    Like the E-2 visa, the initial period for the EB-5 is two years, but it comes with a conditional permanent residency, enabling you to work wherever you want in the US. The E-2 visa only allows you to work with your chosen investment business. Furthermore, after your two years on the EB-5 have elapsed, you are eligible to apply for a Green Card. 

    Depending on your situation, you may be able to apply for the E-2 visa, and if you later decide you would like to settle in the US, you can apply for the EB-5 investor visa too.


    Where We Come In…

    At High Net Worth Immigration, we have supported numerous investors seeking to establish a foothold in the United States through business investment. 

    Our team can provide you with all the assistance and direction you need to obtain a US investor visa and advise on the ideal immigration route based on your specific circumstances.

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    Vicky Katsarova

    A citizen of the world in every sense of the phrase, Vicky has done her fair share of traveling. Born and raised in Bulgaria, she spent 10 years living and working in Abu Dhabi before settling down with her family in Nova Scotia, Canada. And it’s only fitting for the CEO and founder of High Net Worth Immigration to be an avid globetrotter—her extensive travels have given her deeper insight and understanding into her clients’ needs.