Investor Visa

If you would like to live and work in the United States and have a significant amount of capital at your disposal, you may be eligible to apply for an investor visa.


Both the temporary investor visa (E-2) and the permanent investor visa (EB-5*) are available to foreign nationals that are willing to invest in a commercial for-profit enterprise in the United States.

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Benefits of a Temporary or Permanent Investor Visa

Both the E-2 and EB-5 investor visas allow you to:

  • Work legally in the United States
  • Enter and exit the US as needed
  • Bring your spouse and any dependent children under 21 (who are allowed to work and/or attend school without having to apply for separate visas)

Differences Between E-2 and EB-5 Investor Visas

  • The temporary investor visa (E-2) is only available to citizens of treaty countries
  • The temporary investor visa allows for unlimited renewals, as long as the business stays operational
  • The permanent investor visa (EB-5) allows you and your dependents to apply for US citizenship after 5 years residing in the United States, while the temporary investor visa is considered a non-immigrant visa and does not allow for adjustment of status
  • The permanent investor visa requires a much higher capital (see below; other conditions apply)

E-2 Temporary Investor Visa

If you are a citizen of a treaty country willing to invest a “substantial amount” (generally at least $100,000 depending on the type of business) in a new or existing US company, this visa may be right for you. Your investment must represent a substantial portion of the company’s balance sheet and be projected to keep the business viable for the foreseeable future. There are several other requirements and conditions to this type of visa – please reach out with any specific questions.

E-2 Visa Validity

The E-2 visa is valid from a few months to a few years depending on the business and your country of nationality, and can be renewed indefinitely every two years for as long as the business remains operational.


E-2 Visa Dependents

Your spouse and unmarried children under 21 (dependents) may travel with you to the US, where they are eligible to work and/or attend school.

Types of Businesses for E-2 Visa

The E-2 Temporary Work Visa can be granted for a variety of businesses, from startups to franchises. Franchises are popular because they offer an established business model and clear profit/loss projections, which makes them more predictable than other types of businesses.

EB-5 Permanent Investor Visa (Investor Green Card)

The EB-5 Investor Green Card is available to anyone willing to invest a minimum of $1.8 million in a new or existing commercial enterprise that provides full-time employment to 10 people. The minimum investment is set at $900,000 if the enterprise is located in a rural or economically depressed area.

EB-5 Regional Centers

As an investor, you may also be able to participate in the Immigrant Investor Program at one of the designated Regional Centers around the country. Regional Centers provide resources and guidance for investors in many sectors, which helps increase your chances of success.


 EB-5 Dependents

As is the case with the Temporary Investor Visa (E-2), the Investor Green Card provides for your spouse and dependent children under 21 to reside in the United States, where they can work and/or attend school without having to apply for separate visas.

Types of Businesses for EB-5 Visa

From real estate to health care, hospitality, and manufacturing, there are several excellent opportunities to invest in a growing industry and create or purchase a business that will become a driver of economic growth in the area.

*Important note: the EB-5 visa is currently set to expire on 6/30/2021 unless it is reapproved by Congress.

Whether you’re considering an E-2 or EB-5 visa, at Cifuentes Marrero, P.A., we’re happy to help. Investing in any commercial enterprise is a complex decision with many financial and legal ramifications – you can’t go it alone. Let us explain the requirements, timelines, and features for each type of investor visa so you can make a sound decision to benefit you and your family for years to come.

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