Do You Qualify for the E-1 Visa?

An E-1 treaty trader visa is a nonimmigrant visa. Still, it is renewable for unlimited terms, so this visa offers many opportunities for foreign nationals who do business in the United States. Employees and family members may also qualify for a visa to live in the U.S. through the Treaty Trader program.

Applicants for a new visa or a renewal must prove they meet the qualifications. The experienced immigration attorneys at the law office of Luis F. Hess, PLLC, understand the nuances of this popular visa program and can help you demonstrate your eligibility.

Qualifications for an E-1 Treaty Trader Visa

Treaty trader visas are only available to foreign nationals from a country with the formal agreement or treaty currently in force with the U.S. A list of countries with qualifying treaties, or other arrangements can be found on the U.S. Department of State website.

Those from eligible countries may receive an E-1 visa if they can demonstrate that they carry on “substantial trade” and that 50% or more of their trade volume is between the U.S. and the country of their nationality.

Eligibility for Employees and Family

Certain family members and employees of those eligible for an E-1 Treaty Trader visa may also be eligible for a visa. To qualify, an employee must be of the same nationality as the treaty country, meet the legal definition of an “employee,” and either engage in supervisory or executive duties or have unique attributes that make them essential to the operation. For instance, the employee might have special abilities or a high degree of expertise in the employer’s business. (Knowledge of a foreign language is not sufficient on its own to meet this standard.)

Treaty traders and their qualifying employees may have spouses and unmarried children accompany them or follow them into the U.S. Children must be under 21 to receive a derivative visa. However, they need not be of the same nationality as the Treaty Trader or Qualifying Employee.

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