In this article we discuss can E2 visa holder work for another company? The answer is generally no, an E2 visa holder who is the principal investor or an E2 employee cannot work for another company. However, the answer to this question is rather elusive, and under certain circumstances an E2 visa holder may be able to work for another company. Of course, these circumstances are complex and are not encountered every day.
It is also important to keep in mind that unlike principal applicants for E2 visa, whether principal investor or E2 employee, dependent spouse E2 visa holder can work for any U.S. or foreign employer, part-time or full-time and can even be self-employed. Because there are no restrictions on employment of E2 visa dependent spouse, the article will focus only on whether a principal E2 visa holder can work for another company.
First, the E2 visa holder investor or employee can only engage in employment that is consistent with the terms and conditions of his or her status and the activity forming the basis for the E2 visa. That is, the E2 investor or employee can only engage in work that formed the basis of their E2 visa approval. This means that if the E2 investor or employee was approved to work for a specific E2 company conducting a certain line of business and in a specific position, then he or she cannot go work for another company, including another E2 company, or change the position or the activities of the E2 business without prior approval because such changes can be deemed to constitute a substantive change in the terms and conditions of the E2 visa.
If, however, the E2 investor or employee engages in other activities that did not form the basis for the E2 status, then he or she will be in violation of the E2 status. For example, in the case Matter of Laigo, the Board of Immigration Appeals found that a self-employed E2 investor who controlled companies engaged in the development of the Philippine Cultural and Trade Center violated her E2 status when she started selling cemetery plots on behalf of another unrelated company in return for commissions.
Second, an E2 employee visa holder can work for another company if the other company is actually a subsidiary of the E2 company. In other words, an E2 employee is allowed to work for other companies as long as such companies are subsidiaries of the E2 parent company. Performing work for subsidiaries does not constitute a substantive change in the terms and conditions of the underlying E2 employment, only if at the time the E2 visa was approved, the employee presented evidence to establish:
- The primary E2 employer and any subsidiaries thereof where work will be performed had a qualifying parent-subsidiary relationship, and the subsidiary independent qualifies as a treaty organization or enterprise;
- The work to be performed requires executive, supervisory, or essential skills; and
- The work is consistent with the terms and conditions of the activity forming the basis of the classification.
Finally, an E2 visa holder, investor or employee cannot generally work for another company. But in situations where working for another company may be possible, the investor or employee must exercise great care because an unauthorized change of employment can render the E2 investor or employee out of lawful status.
If you as an E2 visa holder want to work for another company, it is important that you immediately seek the advice of an experienced E2 visa lawyer before engaging in employment that is not consistent with the terms and conditions of your E2 status and the activity forming the basis for the E2 visa.
Can E2 visa holder work for another company? Our E2 visa lawyers in Miami, Florida USA can assist you with understanding whether an E2 visa holder work for another company and applying for an E2 visa. Contact us today or schedule an appointment.
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