What is the electronic visa? – Work visas

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What is the electronic visa?

The E visa is for traders and investors who come to the United States under a treaty of commerce and navigation between the United States and the country of which the trader or investor is a citizen or national.

The E visa category also includes Australian skilled workers.

E visa eligibility

Foreign nationals who share the same nationality as the corporate or individual owner of the sponsoring U.S. entity may apply for an E-2 visa.

There are three types of people eligible for an E-2 visa:

  1. A foreign investor with a significant stake in a U.S. entity (at least 50% stake must always be held)

  2. An executive or managerial employee of a foreign investment company retaining a controlling interest at all times, with at least 50% ownership

  3. An essential employee of a foreign investment company with key skills that enable the performance of specific job functions

What are the E Visa treaty countries?

Examples of treaty-signing countries include Australia, Belgium, Colombia, Egypt and many others. For a complete list of signatory countries,visit the United States Department of State website.

What is the E-2 visa?

Applicants use the E-2 treaty visa to enter the United States only to develop and run a business in which they have invested a substantial amount of capital. The spouse and children of the primary visa holder may also be granted an E-2 dependent visa.

How to Obtain an E-2 Visa

To obtain an E-2 investor visa, the applicant must:

  • Be sufficient to ensure the success of the operation

  • Lead to a fully operational business or entrepreneurial venture

  • Generate more income than supporting the traveler’s family, or it is expected to have a major impact on the US economy

E-2 visa application and filing fees

Here are the costs for the E-2 visa:

  • Fee for filing at the consulate: $205

  • USCIS filing fee: $460. Applicants typically apply for the E-2 visa at a U.S. consulate or embassy overseas and can be extended through USCIS if needed.

  • Premium treatment: $2,500. Employers can pay the premium processing fee when available, and USCIS will decide the E-2 petition within 15 calendar days. This means that USCIS will either approve, issue a proof request, or deny the visa application.

How long does an E-2 visa last?

Candidates have an initial stay of two years. They can then request extensions in two-year increments. As such, an individual’s total stay on the E-2 visa varies.

If the temporary nature of the assignment changes, please discuss this with your attorney.

What is the E-3 visa?

The E-3 Certain Specialty Occupation Professional is a visa available only to Australian citizens.

How to Obtain an E-3 Visa

Australian citizens must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • There is a legitimate job offer in the United States

  • The individual possesses at least a US Bachelor’s degree or its equivalent.

  • Will fill a specialized occupation that requires a specific skill set or specialized knowledge. Specialty occupations typically include healthcare, biotechnology, human resources, education, engineering, IT, medicine, and more.

  • The US employer must make certifications about wages and working conditions in a Labor Conditions Application (LCA), which is submitted to the US Department of Labor (DOL).

  • E-3 visa application and filing fees


  • Fee for filing at the consulate: $205

  • USCIS filing fee: $460. Applicants typically apply for the E-3 visa at a U.S. consulate or embassy overseas and can be extended through USCIS if needed.

  • Premium treatment: $2,500. Employers can pay premium processing fees when available, and USCISrule on the E-3 request within 15 calendar days. This means that USCIS will either approve, issue a proof request, or deny the visa application.

How long does an E-3 visa last?

Candidates have an initial stay of two years. They can then request extensions in two-year increments. As such, an individual’s total stay on the E-3 visa varies.

If the temporary nature of the assignment changes, please discuss this with your attorney.

If the foreign national is outside the United States, they will likely need to apply for a visa to enter the United States under the specific visa category before entering the United States under the specific status.

For more information on the E visa category,download our guide, an introduction to electronic visas.

Envoy is pleased to provide you with this information, which has been prepared in conjunction with Sara Herbek, who is the Managing Partner of Global Immigration Associates, PC

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide on the subject. Specialist advice should be sought regarding your particular situation.

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