E-2 Treaty Investor Visa
If you’re looking for fast and (relatively) cheap, the E-2 is your visa.
The E-2 is unequivocally the fastest way to get to work legally in the US, and all done on the basis of a US company that you establish.
That’s right: you start a company that sponsors you to work for it as an immigrant employee. And your spouse can obtain a universal work permit as well.
This also qualifies as among the cheapest investment class visas. Investment minimums vary by industrial sector, and the nature of the business you are starting.
You might get away with an investment of as little as USD $75,000, but most will expect to invest in the neighbourhood of USD $200,000 or more.
Of course, there’s a catch.
Some consider the catch to be one of the E-2’s best features.
The E-2 is a visas"non-immigrant" visa: they are temporary, typically issued for 5 years.
But importantly, they are renewable indefinitely. There is no limit on the number of times you can renew this visa -- so long as upon application, you officially intend to leave when your business in the US is done.
Crucially, E-2 visas do not result in obtaining a green card.
That in turn means that E-2 holders are not subject to US tax on worldwide income.
So you get all the benefits of US residency, you can get there quickly, your business risk is a fraction of the EB-5, you control that risk yourself, and you can keep your money offshore without penalty – something US citizens and green card holders don’t enjoy.
What’s not to like?