Last Updated on March 1, 2013
The Treaty Investor Visa permits citizens of certain countries to reside in the United States through an investment in the U.S.A. The investor must come to manage or oversee the investment.
The Treaty Trader visa is the same as the Treaty Investor visa except that it involves qualifying trade between the US and the treaty country. Instead of investing the qualifying activity is import/export of goods or services.
One may invest in virtually anything or trade in virtually anything. While some under $200,000 investments are approved, its safe to say that the investment capital and reserves should total at least $200,000 and the applicant must be prepared to demonstrate that the business will employ at least 3 – 4 persons. Minimum annual trade should be at least $500,000.
The investment funds and the applicant both must come from the same Treaty Country. 50% or more of the U.S. investment must be owned by citizens of the Treaty Country.
Treaty Country List
Who uses the Treaty Investor Visa?
- Large companies who establish manufacturing plants
- Real estate investors
- Small businessmen who purchase a franchise or small business
- Retirees who use the Treaty Investor visa as a means of getting US status so they can retire in America.
The Treaty Investor visa lasts as long as one maintains the investment. That’s good and bad. If you sell the business you loose the visa unless the money is reinvested.
The Treaty Investor Visa includes the principal applicant and children under 21. At the age of 21 children must either convert to an investor green card by investing more capital or get married or attend a US University and then find job as an H1B professional or make an investment themselves as a Treaty Investor.
The E2 has tax advantages. Green card holders pay tax US income tax on world wide income or they can loose their green card. This can be expensive for people with foreign sources of income. E2 visa holders have ways to avoid world wide taxation. Green card holders have no way out. For this reason many investors prefer the E2 visa to the green card.
One may not apply for a treaty trader or treaty investor visa unless the funds are committed to an investment or unless trade exists. Traders must come to the US as business visitors to get things going before applying for the Treaty Trader visa. Traders must produce evidence of existing trade such as purchase orders and bills of lading to obtain the visa. Investors must place their funds in the hands of a bank or closing agent who is instructed to release the funds to the seller of the property or business upon visa approval. Investors developing their own business must come to the US as business visitors to get the business started before applying for the Treaty Investor visa.