Investor Visa Lawyer USA
Are you an investor or entrepreneur considering a move to the United States? Our investor visa lawyers USA specialize in investment immigration and US investor visas. We provide our clients legal advice concerning business immigration to the United States and combine extensive knowledge of investment immigration with international business experience to offer customized legal services that serve our clients’ immigration goals.
For investment-based visas and green cards, our investor visa lawyers assist clients with company formation, commercial contracts, permits and licenses, investment planning and strategy, corporate and deal structuring, regulatory compliance, trademarks and copyrights and contract review. To deliver the best legal and business support services to international investors and entrepreneurs our firm further provides business valuation, business plans and legal and financial due diligence services for investor visas and green cards.
With our US investment immigration practice we incorporate other aspects of law, including general business and corporation law, contract law, finance, intellectual property rights, licensing, zoning laws, and other regulations relating to a specific area of business, in order to provide the best legal advice to our clients. We can also help clients with offering documents to raise capital or advise them on certain investment offerings made by third parties.
As investor visa lawyers in USA, we cover all areas of immigration law for investors, entrepreneurs and their families and employees, including E-2 Investor Visa, EB-5 Investor Green Card, L-1 Business Investment Visa, E-1 International Trade Investor Visa, International Entrepreneur Parole Program and other investor visas and green cards.
“Our investor visa lawyers use business and immigration expertise to advise you on all aspects of business and investment immigration, capital raising and daily business operations to business growth strategies.”
Our investor visa USA services include:
- E-2 Investor Visa
- E-1 Trade Investor Visa
- L-1 Investment Visa for Executives or Managers
- L-1 Investment Visa for Canadians
- EB-5 Investor Green Card
- EB-2 National Interest Waiver (NIW) Green Card
- EB-1C Multinational Manager or Executive
- International Entrepreneur Rule Parole Program
- O-1 Investor Visa for Individuals with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement
The Ultimate Investor Visa Lawyer USA Guide to US investor visas
Investor visas are a great way for international investors to get into the US and establish a successful business or otherwise pursue business opportunities in the United States. Whether you are an investor looking to start a business, invest in real estate, or simply expand your current business, this guide will provide you with important information about US investor visas.
In this investor’s guide, our investor visa lawyers USA provide a comprehensive overview of the four most popular investor visa options available to foreign investors including E-2 investor visa, EB-5 investor green card, L-1 investment visa and E-1 trade investor visa. It includes an overview of each visa type, requirements, application process, and advantages of each visa, giving investors the information needed to understand which visa is most suitable for them, their family and employees.
1. E-2 Investor Visa
The E-2 Investor Visa is a great investment immigration option for the USA for individuals who have access to capital and want to move to the United States to manage their own business. Unlike the EB-5 investor green card, there is no minimum investment requirement for the E-2 investor visa. However, to qualify for E-2 investor visa, it is recommended that foreign investors do not invest less than $50,000.
The E-2 investor visa allows a national of a treaty country to live and work in the United States in order to develop and direct a U.S business. To be eligible for an E-2 Investor Visa, the investor or entrepreneur must be a national of a treaty country. For a current list of countries that qualify for an E-2 Investor Visa, please visit the U.S. Department of State’s Treaty Countries List.
In addition to being a national of a treaty country, the investor or entrepreneur must invest a substantial amount of capital in a business in the United States and be in a position to develop and direct the specific business in order to qualify for an Investor Visa. Certain employees of such an investor or entrepreneur or of a qualifying organization may also be eligible for E-2 Investor Visas.
The E-2 investor visa does not automatically lead to a green card, but the investor can pursue a green card while holding an E-2 investor visa.
To obtain an E-2 investor visa you can invest in:
E-2 Investor Visa Requirements
To summarize, the E-2 investor visa requirements are:
- The investor is a citizen of one of the E2 Treaty Countries
- The investor has invested or is in the process of investing in a US business
- The business is real and operating
- The investment is substantial
- The business is not marginal
- The applicant is in a position to develop and direct the business
- The applicant intends to depart the United States when the E2 status ends
The validity of the E-2 investor visa depends on the country of citizenship of the investor. The E-2 investor visa can be issued for a maximum of 5 years. At expiration, the investor can apply for a renewal of E-2 visa if the business continues to meet all legal requirements.
The E-2 visa holders can also bring their spouse and children (unmarried and under 21) to the United States on an E-2 visa. The spouse is employment authorized incident to status and his or her right to work in the United States is unrestricted. Children are not permitted to work in the U.S.
E-2 Investor Visa Process
Investors can apply for the E-2 investor visa in two ways:
- File E-2 Investor Visa Petition with U.S. Consulate, if investor is outside the United States
- File for change of status with USCIS, if investor is in the United States
Building an E-2 investor visa case requires local knowledge, investment planning, business and transactions structuring as well as regulatory compliance and our investor visa lawyers USA use extensive business and corporate knowledge and investor immigration experience to advise you throughout the entire E-2 investor visa process.
Why choose the E-2 Investor Visa?
With an E-2 investor visa you enjoy many benefits including:
- No minimum investment required
- Lower investment of no less than $50,000
- Work for your own US business
- Bring your spouse and children to the US
- Travel internationally
- Obtain SSN
- Renew your E-2 investor visa indefinitely
- Apply for green card
- Relocate your employees to the US business.
2. EB-5 Investor Green Card
The EB-5 Investor Program, is a US visa that allows a foreign investor or entrepreneur together with their spouses and children to permanently live and work in the United States and apply for permanent residence, commonly known as Green Card, if they invest the required amount of capital in a U.S. company and create or preserve 10 permanent full-time jobs for qualified U.S. workers.
The required amount of investment necessary to qualify for an Investment Green Card is $1,050,000 for projects situated in an urban area, and $800,000 for projects in targeted employment areas (TEA).
Types of Qualifying EB-5 Investments
The required investment for the EB-5 Investor USA Program can be through two types of qualifying investments:
- EB-5 Regional Center Investment
- Direct EB-5 Investment
EB-5 Regional Center Investment
The EB-5 investor green card can also be made through the Regional Center Program, where a foreign investor or entrepreneur invests in a U.S. commercial enterprise associated with regional centers approved by USCIS based on proposals for promoting economic growth.
The EB-5 Regional Center Projects rely on financing, investment and development with capital from foreign Investors and entrepreneurs seeking a permanent residence in the United States. As a result, EB-5 Regional Center investment offerings made to foreign investors and entrepreneurs are subject to United States securities laws even if the investment opportunities are offered primarily outside of the United States to investors and entrepreneurs that are not currently U.S. residents. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has brought several legal actions against EB-5 regional center operators in cases of investor fraud. If you are a foreign investor or entrepreneur considering becoming a U.S. resident through investing in an EB-5 Regional Center, please be aware of investment scams and contact us to assist you with your investment.
Direct EB-5 Investment
The EB-5 investor green card can also be made through investment of the minimum capital required in a US commercial enterprise owned by the investor. In other words, investors can invest the required amount of capital in their own business in the U.S. and create the required 10 full-time jobs.
It is also possible for the investor to start with an E-2 investor visa and make the required EB-5 capital investment in the E-2 business over time and apply for EB-5 investor green card.
EB-5 Investor Green Card Process
The EB-5 Investor Green Card process includes the following steps:
- Consult an Immigration Lawyer for EB-5 Investor Green Card
- Select a Suitable EB-5 Project or Business to Invest
- Invest the Required Capital
- Compile Documents for EB-5 Investor Green Card
- File I-526 Petition for Standalone Investor
- File I-526E Petition for Regional Center Investor, if applicable
- Obtain Conditional Green Card via Adjustment of Status or Consular Processing
- File I-829 Petition to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status
Why Choose the EB-5 Investor Green Card?
The EB-5 Investor Green Card is one of the most popular investor visa option for foreign investors.
The EB-5 Investor Green Card may be an attractive option for successful investors or entrepreneurs who want to continue developing their own business in the United States. It can also be a great option for those investors or entrepreneurs who are approaching retirement or do not want to be actively involved in business anymore but want to secure a future in the United States for their young children.
The benefits of choosing EB-5 Investor Green Card are:
- You can live and work in the United States
- You can apply for permanent residency (Green Card)
- You can simultaneously apply for adjustment of status, work permit and travel document, if you are in the United States
- You can bring your spouse and children
- Spouse can and children can work in the U.S. or attend public or private schools, universities or colleges in the United States
- Travel outside the United States and re-enter
- Path to US citizenship
3. L-1 Investment Visa for Executives or Managers
The L-1 Visa was initially intended and designed for large corporations to help facilitate easy transfer of employees from abroad to the United States. However, the L-1 Investment Visa also provides small and medium-sized companies with an opportunity to expand their business and service to the United States.
Although the L-1 visa is frequently used to transfer foreign employees to a company’s US office, the L-1 visa can also be an attractive investment visa option for investors who are not citizens of an E-2 treaty country and therefore cannot qualify for E-2 investor visa. The L-1 Investment Visa can also be a great solution for investors whose investment in a US business is less than the required minimum investment amount for EB-5 Investor Green Card – $800,000 for projects located in targeted employment areas (TEA) or $1,050,000 for projects in non-TEA. To summarize, the L-1 investment visa for executives or managers can be an attractive proposition for investors who cannot qualify for E-2 investor visa and want to invest lower than the EB-5 Investor Green Card threshold amount.
Foreign investors who own a business in another country and are interested in expanding their operations to the United States or otherwise start a new line of business in the US for their group can use the L-1 investment visa option to transfer the executive or manager of the foreign company to the US, including themselves.
Employees coming to the United States to establish a new office can be approved a maximum initial stay of 1 year on an L-1 Visa. All other employees who are coming to the US to join an existing office will be granted an initial L-1 Visa for 3 years. The maximum duration of stay on L-1 investment visa for a Manager or Executive is 7 years.
Spouses and children under the age of 21 and unmarried can accompany an L-1 visa holder by using the L-2 visa. The period of stay for the L-2 visa corresponds to that of the L-1 visa. Spouse of an L-1 visa holder is employment authorized incident to status and can work for any company in the United States.
L-1 Investment Visa Requirements
The L-1 Investment Visa Requirements are:
- US company is a subsidiary, branch, or other affiliate of your foreign company
- You worked continuously outside of the United States in an executive or manager capacity for the company for at least 1 year in the prior 3 years.
- You are coming to the United States to establish a new office or join a pre-existing US office.
- You are working as an executive or manager in the United States.
- Your company must be doing business in the US and at least one other country for your stay in L-1 status.
- You have secured sufficient physical premises for your new office in the United States.
- Your US company is able to support an executive or managerial position within a specified period.
L-1 Investment Visa Process
The L-1 Investment Visa Process includes the following steps:
- The L-1 visa requires initial approval of an I-129 petition with USCIS.
- After USCIS approves the L-1 petition, you can apply for L-1 investment visa at a U.S. Consulate or Embassy abroad
- If you are in the United States, you can request a change of status directly on the L-1 petition filed with USCIS
Why Choose the L-1 Investment Visa?
The L-1 Investment visa for Executives or Managers may be an option for an investor or entrepreneur who has initially started a business outside of the United States that will continue operations or if the entrepreneur combines operations with a company abroad at which they have previously worked.
The L-1 Investment Visa has numerous advantages and benefits including:
- Lower investment amount
- No citizenship requirement
- Dual intent – more flexibility when applying for green card
- Transfer employees from foreign company
- Work for your own business
- Travel internationally
- Bring spouse and children to the US
4. E-1 Trade Investor Visa
Investors who wish to go to the United States to carry on substantial trade, principally between the United States and their own country, may apply for an E-1 trade investor visa.
While the E-1 visa is not an investor visa in the real sense, in practice it can be a great alternative to the traditional investor visas for USA, if your foreign business engages in substantial trade with the United States. The E-1 treaty trader visa is popular because unlike the L-1 investment visa category, it is not necessary to maintain a business outside the United States, and it can be renewed without limits.
Since the E-1 trade investor visa requires proof of existing substantial trade, it can be hard for startups in early stages to qualify. E-1 trader visas are more commonly used by investors or entrepreneurs that have an established company abroad and want to continue the ongoing business or services with U.S. customers or to enter the U.S. market and establish a new company in the US.
Investors on E-1 trader visa can bring their foreign employees to work in the United States on an E-1 visa as well as their spouse and children unmarried and under 21. E-1 visa spouses are employment authorized incident to status and can work for any employer.
The validity of the E-1 trader visa depends on the country of citizenship of the investor. The E-1 visa is issued for a maximum of 5 years. At expiration, the investor can apply for renewal.
E-1 Trader Visa Requirements
To qualify for E-1 trade investor visa, you must meet the E-1 trader visa requirements below:
- You possess the nationality of an E-1 treaty country.
- Activities constitute trade. To constitute trade, there should be an exchange involving goods, moneys, or services.
- Trade is substantial. Whether trade is substantial is determined based on the volume and value of the transactions.
- Trade is principally between the United States and your E-1 treaty country. To determine if trade is principally between the United States and your E-1 treaty country, at least 50% of the international trade must be between the United States and your treaty country.
- If applicant is an employee then he or she must be working in an executive/supervisory position or possesses skills essential to the firm’s operations in the United States.
E-1 Trade Investor Visa Process
Just like with the E-2 visa, the process to apply for E-1 trade investor visa has many variables. An investor or an employee can apply for an E-1 trader visa as follows:
- Apply for E-1 visa at a U.S. consulate or embassy abroad, or,
- Apply for a change of status to E-1 on form I-129 with USCIS, if they are in the United States in another lawful status.
The process of applying for an E-1 trade investor visa with the US Consulate or Embassy varies by consulate. Some consulates have formal procedures in place for company registration and in other cases there are separate processes in place for initial company registrations and subsequent applications for employees, and family members.
Why Choose E-1 Trade Investor Visa
The E-1 trade investor visa can be a great option for investors who already engage in substantial trade with the United States and want to expand their business in the United States fast or their capital is tied up.
The E-1 Trade Investor Visa has numerous benefits including:
- No minimum investment required
- Work for your own US company
- Travel internationally
- Bring spouse and children under 21 to the US
- Bring employees from abroad
- Unlimited E-1 visa renewals
- Obtain SSN
- Ability to apply for green card
Our investor visa lawyer can assist
For those looking to invest in the United States, selecting the right investor visa is essential to your success. We can provide you with the necessary information to choose the best investor visa for your circumstances and assist you with the rigorous application process.
Our investor visa lawyers USA specialize in assisting foreign investors and entrepreneurs do business in the United States and navigate the business immigration system and investor visas for themselves and their families and employees. If you are a foreign investor or entrepreneur, contact our investor visa lawyers in Miami, Florida USA or schedule a consultation.
Malescu Law P.A. – Investor Visa Lawyer USA