E2 Visa Requirements: Top 2 of 2022

Written by: Patrick Findaro
Last Updated: March 30, 2022
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This article is based on a video originally recorded on Visa Franchise Youtube Channel

Patrick Findaro here, co-founder at Visa Franchise. Today, I’m going to go through the top two E-2 visa requirements for 2022.

So first off, what passport do you have? What’s your citizenship or what’s the citizenship of your spouse?

If you’re not a citizen of a country that has the E-2 visa treaty you’re not going to be eligible.

You or your spouse can be the investor and the other one is able to get the E-2 visa. Your kids don’t even have to have the same nationality as long as:

  • you’re married
  • and either you or your spouse does the investment or applies for the E-2 visa using a passport that does have the E-2 visa treaty with the United States

Then you can apply for the E-2 visa and the whole family will be able to have the benefits of the E-2 visa.

#1 of Visa requirements: citizenship that qualifies for the E-2 Visa


If neither you nor your spouse has the E-2 visa citizenship, you can get it through ancestry. We have a lot of clients, for example, in Brazil, Venezuela that got the E-2 visa country citizenship through ancestors. They had a grandfather, great-grandfather that was Italian or from Spain, from another country that’s eligible for the E-2 visa and they get citizenship that way. So they apply as dual national.

We have more and more clients that are doing citizenship through investment. So they’ll invest in a country like Grenada or in Turkey. Both of those countries have the E-2 visa with the United States and they use that dual nationality with Grenada, with Turkey to then make an investment and apply for the E-2 visa.

So, the investment. That brings me to the second most important of the E-2 visa requirements, which is a substantiality requirement. What you invest, how much you invest, is important.


#2 of Visa requirements: How much are you investing?

And while there is no minimum, if you show up to your consulate interview and you invested $40,000, the interview is going to be tough without a doubt. Anything lower than $100,000, in our experience —we’ve had well over 400 clients over the last seven years—. Anything over $100,000 is risky. Most attorneys are not willing to put the petition forward if your investment could be considered not substantial. And there is no number, but a lot of consulate officers feel a little more comfortable when it’s $100,000. Also, that the investor shows that they spent money on. It could be the franchise fee, the real estate deposit, they have allocated working capital in the business, different professional advisory fees…

If it’s a business in which you need a car —like real estate property management or you’re installing floors or windows and you have a franchise that’s doing those types of installations, a truck, a car— could potentially work as an investment. But the key is substantiality. That it needs to be enough money to get the business off the ground and hit profitability within that five-year period.

Generally, you’re doing a business plan for five years. So you’ve got to work with your attorney. Find out if the business you’re interested in meets the substantiality E-2 visa requirement.


The key is substantiality, that it needs to be enough money to get the business off the ground and hit profitability within that five-year period


What else may you need to know about your Visa Requirements?


Make sure to go on the State Department website, make sure that your nationality —the citizenship that you have, or your spouse has— is eligible for the E-2 visa. And if it’s not eligible, maybe an E-2 visa is not the best fit. Or maybe you could do citizenship by investment in a country. Or see if you can work with someone that can check to see—. You could see citizenship by investment or potentially citizenship by ancestry.

The ancestry route is generally a longer process of one to three years. Where citizenship by investment could be as little as three months. Four months to acquire a second nationality that is eligible for the E-2 visa.


So, again: two key E-2 visa requirements —especially in 2022— are the substantiality of the investment, and you’ve got to have a citizenship that qualifies for the E-2 Visa in the first place.

Are you thinking about investing in a franchise?

Make sure to check out Visa Franchise’s website for listings of franchises in the industry of your choice.