We are beginning a series of the ten most frequently asked questions our clients ask during the initial consultation regarding investing in the U.S. and applying for an E-2 visa. We hope these questions and answers will assist our readers better understand the E-2 visa process.
QUESTION 1: Do I need to invest the funds in the U.S. before I apply for the E-2 Visa?
ANSWER: Although the regulations state, in part, that the foreign national must have "invested or is in the process of investing," the practical result of the interpretation of the regulations is that the money must be irrevocably committed to the business. Sometimes, our clients have trouble understanding how immigration can make them commit funds into a business before the E-2 visa is granted. At Colombo & Hurd, we often help our clients develop various legal mechanisms such as holding funds in an escrow or trust account pending approval of the E-2 visa to protect our clients yet satisfy the E-2 regulations. It is important for our readers to understand that an intention to invest or possession of uncommitted funds in a bank account will not result in an E-2 approval. It is critical to understand this concept before applying for an E-2 visa, as consular officers will require proof of the investment or commitment of funds prior to issuing the visa.