E Visas or Investor Visas
1. I want to start my own business in the U.S., is there anything I could do to maintain my legal status?
There are two types of visas that generally will allow an individual to open and maintain a business in the U.S. under certain conditions. First, an E Visa allows an individual to invest money in the formation of a new business. There are several conditions that must be met for this visa, including that there must be a treaty between the U.S. and the country of citizenship of the individual seeking the visa. In addition to this, the investment must be substantial and pass a substantiality test, and the investment capital must be at risk. (See E Visa process and documents needed on our website at: E-1 and E-2 Visa)The other potential option is an L-1A Visa which allows an individual to enter the U.S. for the formation of a new business if there is a foreign company, or entity, that is “affiliated” with the new business and the individual seeking the visa has previously been employed with the foreign “affiliated” company outside of the U.S. in an executive or managerial capacity for at least one year of the last three years.
In order to maintain your non-immigrant status you must comply with the terms of your existing visa and you must file for any change in status prior to the expiration of the date identified in your I-94. If your I-94 does not contain a date and instead has the letters D/S (Duration of Status), for a student, then the application for change of status must be filed prior to the expiration of the date set by your form I-20 or in the alternative, set by the work authorization card you received for Optional Practical Training.
2. How much money do I have to invest to apply for an E Visa?
3. How long does the U.S. company have to be open before it can sponsor me for an E visa?
4. Can my wife/children work or study in the U.S., if I have the E Visa status?
5. What documents do I need to get the E Visa?
6. How much money does the company need to make to sponsor me for an E Visa?
7. Can I accept employment from another company while I am under an E or L Visa?
8. Are there numerical limitations for E or L Visas?
9. Can I transfer an E or L Visa to another company?
10. How many E Visa holders can work in the U.S. for the same company at the same time?
11. Are my family members eligible for H-1b Visa status, if I am under an E visa?
12. What happens if I sell shares of my company and I am in the U.S. under an E Visa status?
13. What is my status while my first E Visa application is pending?
14. What status can my spouse and children get if I’m applying for an E Visa or I already have an E Visa?
15. Can an E Visa holder’s family members work or study in the US?
16. How long does the E Visa status last?
17. How many times may I renew it?
18. How long do I have to leave the country after my E Visa status expires or my company is no longer in business?
IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT THIS DOCUMENT
The information contained in this document is general in nature and subject to change at any point in time. As such, it may not necessarily apply to all situations. Therefore, under no circumstance it should be construed as legal advice. Please ensure that you consult with an attorney regarding your specific situation before starting a legal process.