A derivative e-2 visa pertains to a spouse or minor unmarried child. It is important to note that a derivative E-2 spouse can obtain work authorization. So, unlike many other nonimmigrant categories, when the E-2 derivative spouse comes to the U.S., they are allowed to apply for employment authorization.
However, unlike the E-2 principal, the work authorization is not tied to the E-2 business. This allows the spouse to work at another job if they feel like they want to do that or they can work for the E-2 enterprise. They are free to pursue any lawful employment opportunity.
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