United States E Visas for Temporary Workers

There are more than 60 countries which have E-1 and E-2 treaties with the US. The E visas allow foreign-born investors to conduct businesses in the US or work in the US for certain foreign-owned companies. 

Who Is It For

Treaty traders (E1 visas)

The E1 visa, also known as the Treaty Trader Visa is a US non-immigrant visa. Treaty traders are those who conduct substantial, principal trade in goods, services or technology between the country of applicant’s citizenship and the US. The available laws do not specify a minimum amount of trade that must be done to be eligible for an E1 visa, since this differs based on industries.

Treaty investors (E2 visas)

Treaty investors are known as those who direct processes of a business in which they have made substantial investment, or are actively investing, a substantial amount of money or capital in a bona fide U.S. business. 

Australian specialty occupation workers (E3 visas)

The E-3 visa is for the citizens of Australia as well as their spouses and children.

How to Qualify?

E-1 Visa Requirements:

  • You should be from a country the United States continues a treaty of commerce and navigation with;
  • conduct substantial trade; and
  • conduct principal trade between the United States and the treaty country which made you suitable for E-1 classification.
  • Substantial trade basically means the ongoing flow of sizable international trade items, involving frequent transactions over time.

E-2 Visa Requirements:

  • You should be from a country the United States continues a treaty of commerce and navigation with;
  • Have made an investment in the US, or are profoundly in the process of investing, a considerable amount of capital in a bona fide enterprise in the US; and
  • Be willing to enter the United States exclusively to develop and direct the investment enterprise.

E-3 Visa Requirements:

  • Be an Australian Citizen
  • Have a genuine offer of employment in the United States;
  • Have the required academic or other qualifying credentials; and
  • Be eligible for a position that qualifies as a specialty occupation.

Process

To start the petition procedure to adjust your status, you or your employer must:

Documents Needed

Organize and prepare the following basic documents before your visa interview:

  • Passport: A valid passport for travel to the United States – Your passport must have at least six months beyond your period of stay in the United States (unless exempt by country-specific agreements). Separate visa application must be submitted If more than one person is included in the application.
  • Nonimmigrant Visa Application, Form DS-160confirmation page
  • Visa application fee payment document, if you are required to pay before your interview schedule.
  • Photo – You will upload your photo while completing the online Form DS-160. If the photo upload fails,you must bring one printed photo in the format explained in the Photograph Requirements
  • Nonimmigrant Treaty Trader/Treaty Investor Application, Form DS-156E– This form is mandatory for:
    • all E-1 treaty trader visa applicants; and
    • E-2 treaty investor visa applicants, if you are a Manager/Executive/Essential Employee.

Government Fees

The visa application fee for US E visas is $460.

Additional Information

Applying from Within the United States

E-1 or E-2 visas

  • It is not possible to apply for E-1 or E-2 visas from outside of the U.S. There is a different classification for E-2 CNMI-Only Investors.

E-3 visas

  • You must attach the following documents with our Form I-129:
  • A Labor Condition Application (LCA);
  • Academic or other credentials demonstrating qualifications for the position; and
  • A job offer or other documentation from the employer

Applying from Outside the United States

E-3 visas

  • If we USCIS approves your Form I-129, they will forward a Form I-797, Notice of Action/Approval, to your employer, who should forward it to you.
  • The next step is to apply for a U.S. visa at a U.S. embassy or consulate near you, usually in your country of residence abroad.

Source: U.S. Department of State