What Is the E Visa?

What Is the E Visa?

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

The E visa category also includes Australian specialty occupation workers.

E Visa Eligibility

Foreign nationals sharing the same nationality as the company or person that owns the sponsoring U.S. entity may apply for an E-2 visa.

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

  1. A foreign national investor with a sizable stake in a U.S. entity (at least 50% ownership must always be held)
  2. A managerial or executive employee of a foreign investing corporation maintaining controlling interest at all times, with at least 50% ownership
  3. An essential employee of a foreign investing corporation with key skills that allow for performing specific job functionalities

What Are the E Visa Treaty Countries?

Examples of treaty countries include Australia, Belgium, Columbia, Egypt and many more. For a full list of treaty countries, visit the U.S. Department of State’s website.

What Is the E-2 Visa?

Applicants use the E-2 Treaty Visa to enter the U.S. solely to develop and direct an enterprise in which they have invested a substantial amount of capital. The primary visa holder’s spouse and children 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 commercial or entrepreneurial undertaking
  • Generate more income than to provide a living for the traveler’s family, or it should majorly impact the U.S. economy

E-2 Visa Application and Filing Fees

The following are costs for the E-2 visa: 

  • Consulate application filing fee: $205 
  • USCIS application filing fee: $460. Applicants typically apply for the E-2 visa at a U.S. Consulate or Embassy abroad and can be extended with USCIS as needed.
  • Premium processing: $2,500. Employers can pay the premium processing fee when available, and USCIS will adjudicate the E-2 petition within 15 calendar days. This means USCIS will approve, issue a request for evidence or deny the visa petition.

How Long Does An E-2 Visa Last?

Applicants have an initial stay of two years. They can then apply for extensions in two-year increments. As such, the total stay for an individual on the E-2 visa varies.

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

What Is the E-3 Visa? 

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

How to Obtain An E-3 Visa

Australian citizens must meet the following eligibility requirements: 

  • There’s a legitimate offer of employment in the U.S.
  • The individual possesses at least a U.S. bachelor’s degree or its equivalent.
  • Will fill a specialty occupation that requires a specific skill set or specialized knowledge. Specialty occupations typically include health care, biotechnology, human resources, education, engineering, computer sciences, medicine and more.
  • The U.S. employer must make attestations about the wage and working conditions in a Labor Condition Application (LCA), which is submitted to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). 

E-3 Visa Application and Filing Fees

  • Consulate application filing fee: $205
  • USCIS application filing fee: $460. Applicants typically apply for the E-3 visa at a U.S. Consulate or Embassy abroad and can be extended with USCIS as needed.
  • Premium processing: Premium processing is not available for E-3 visas that were applied for with USCIS.

How Long Does An E-3 Visa Last?

Applicants have an initial stay of two years. They can then apply for extensions in two-year increments. As such, the total stay for an individual on the E-3 visa varies. 

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


If the foreign national is outside the U.S., he/she likely will need to apply for a visa to enter the U.S. in the specific visa category prior to entering the U.S. in the specific status. 

For more information on the E visa category, download our guide, an Introduction to E Visas.


Envoy is pleased to provide you this information, which was prepared in collaboration with Sara Herbek, who is the Managing Partner at Global Immigration Associates, P.C.

Content in this publication is not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. For additional information on the issues discussed, consult an Envoy-affiliated attorney or another qualified professional.

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