The E-1 Treaty Trader Visa is used by people from countries that have the appropriate treaty with the U.S., who wish to set up an import and/or export business in the United States, trading principally with their native land. These are generally companies that import food items or furniture and furnishings from their home country into the U.S. or are sourcing materials into the United States for export home, but can include trade in services, e.g., banking, insurance, communications, etc.
The E-2 Treaty Investor Visa is utilized by individuals and companies from treaty countries who wish to own and operate a business or have a creative idea on starting and developing a business here. Oftentimes, this involves either the purchase of an ongoing enterprise in the United States or the creation of a new business from scratch. Recently, we are seeing people from other countries who are interested in participating in a startup high-tech company using the E-2 Visa to come to the U.S. to create a business here using their own intellectual property or software as part of the investment. Often they have been able to obtain venture capital funding. People who have pre-existing businesses abroad are able to use the E-2 to set up affiliates or parents or even subsidiaries in the U.S. and start working here and also are able to bring workers into the U.S. on the E Visa or the H-1B or even an L-1 or L-1B Visa.
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