bigstock-Passport-Gavel-5802855One option which is available to foreign citizens who want the right to live and work in the United States is a special type of visa intended solely for investors who invest a substantial amount of capital into the U.S.

Along with being a nation of immigrants, the United States is also a nation of entrepreneurs. Our E1 & E2 investor visa lawyers know that by encouraging foreign investors to invest a substantial amount of capital into the U.S. economy, the U.S. not only gets a quick infusion of cash, but new or expanded jobs that can help get American citizens back to work.

Basic Requirements

Unlike other types of visas, the foreign investor visa does not require the foreign investor to be sponsored by a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident. The investment of capital into the U.S. economy will qualify the foreign investor for this type of visa, not the investor’s relationship to a citizen or lawful resident. As for the amount of capital that must be invested in order for an investor to qualify under the program, the amount has to be at least $1,000,000 – but this amount requirement is lowered to $500,000 if the investment is made into a government designated industry. The government designates industries which would qualify for the reduced investment amount as a way to encourage investment in American sectors that could use it the most.

Another requirement of the program, which is what provides the United States with the most benefit, is that the capital invested into the U.S. economy must be invested into a legitimate business venture and create at least 10 new jobs. If the investment is made into a company or business that already exists, then the job creation requirement is changed slightly, and the investment must instead expand the business’ current employee work force or net worth by 40%.

Why an Investment Has to Work

While no investment is without risk, foreign investors who are granted a U.S. investor’s visa are only granted the visa for an initial period of two years and risk losing the visa if an investment fails. If the investment is unable to create the number of jobs or expand the business by the percentage rate required under the program’s requirements, then the government can revoke the investor’s visa. While extensions to visa deadlines can be granted on a case by case basis, they can’t be issued indefinitely. If the investor wants to maintain his or her investor visa, then the investment made which qualified the person for the visa in the first place will have to be a success under the conditions of the program.

Whether they are thinking of applying for an investor’s visa, in the process of finding a suitable venture into which to invest, or approaching a deadline before all conditions under the investor visa program have been met, individuals with questions about the investor visa program should not hesitate to contact an experienced E1 & E2 investor visa attorney. An attorney can review all of the relevant facts of a foreign investor’s case and help the investor deal with any legal issues relating to the investor visa that may come up.