September 25, 2020 Thato Brenda Beckford 18 Comments

The United States of America actively promotes investments and businesses from foreign nationals to help boost a dynamic U.S economy as immigrants contribute to U.S entrepreneurship more than native-born citizens do. This article will help you decide what necessary steps and helpful tips to take when immigrating a business in the U.S.


There are several options for starting a business in the U.S. Each has its’ own advantages and disadvantages. Hence it is wise to consult an experienced immigration lawyer to determine which visa suits your business purpose. These includes:

  1. EB-5
  2. E-2
  3. L-1
  4. EB-1,2,3

EB- 5 Immigrant Investor Visa

EB-5 stands for employment-based fifth preference category or EB-5 Immigrant Investor Visa Program. This program is suitable for investors planning significant long-term financial investments and permanent residency status in the U.S. To receive EB-5 visa, an investor must meet the requirements listed below:

  1. minimum investment of either $1,800,000 in city setting or $900,000 in rural setting
  2. legitimate source of funds (investment capital should come from a traceable source)
  3. clean background check (the investor and his family should not have any history of criminal records and violation/s of U.S immigration laws)

Upon completion of the said requirements, the investor will receive the following:

  1. permanent green card
  2. repayment of investment
  3. citizenship (optional)

To apply and find out more about EB-5, you may click here

E-2 Visa

E-2 is visa for entrepreneurs who are planning to invest a substantial amount of money to open and operate their own business or as a partner in an existing one. It is valid for two years and does not lead to permanent residency, but has an unlimited two-year extension. A substantial amount of investment will range from $200,000 to $100,000 depending on the kind or nature of the business.

E-2 is generally referred as “Treaty Investor Visa” which means that there must be a treaty between the investor’s home country and the U.S. Click here to check the entire list of eligible treaty countries. To apply and learn more about E-2 visa you may click here

L-1 Visa

This kind of non-immigrant visa for intracompany transfers has two types, L1-A (for managers and executives) and L1-B (for specialized knowledge employees) where the employer (“petitioning employer”) submits the application. The employee however, must have worked for the corporation for one continuous twelve-month period of the last three years.

For the L1-A, the employer must provide a proof that the employee is in fact an executive or works in a managerial role while L1-B will require the employer to provide an evidence of the employee’s level of skill, knowledge, or experience. L1-A is valid up to 7 years while L1-B is up to 5 years.

Click here to apply and learn more about L-1 visa.

EB Visa

This visa allows foreign nationals to obtain a green card (permanent residence) through employment in the U.S. under in any of these “immigrant preference” categories:

  1. EB-1 – priority workers such as those who possess strong ability in sciences, arts, education, etc., outstanding professors or researchers, executives and managers
  2. EB-2 – members of the professions holding advanced degrees or who have exceptional ability
  3. EB-3 – skilled workers, professionals, or other workers

Remember that EB-5 is an investor visa while EB-1, 2 and 3 is a work visa. The company (applicant) must meet necessary eligibilities as well as the immigrant (employee). To find out more, you may check this link

Important Tips to Consider

Business immigration in the U.S can be a tough and challenging process especially if you have no prior experience of obtaining an American visa. When deciding what business or investment you should open or operate in the U.S there are several things to consider:

  1. The U.S as a Destination

America offers multitude of benefits such as global access, safe investments, top universities and best healthcare among others.

  • What Business to Pursue

After making such list, study your choices and do some background research. It would be easier to apply for a business/work visa if you have a proper understanding of the kind of enterprise you want to operate or business in general… such as trends, costs, risks, etc.

  • Prepare Important Requirements Ahead

Check your passport validity, review your billing and bank statements, business plans and strategies, and other important documents you may need to present in advance to avoid delayed submission.

  • Consult an Experienced Immigration Lawyer

An immigration lawyer ensures that you get through the process without making mistakes to avoid getting your visa application denied.

At Beckford Law Firm, your American dream is within your reach. We offer all available options there is and help realize your business immigration plans at a cost-effective way. Contact us now for a free case consultation.

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