Can I Work for Multiple Companies on an E-2 visa? Can I Work for a Subsidiary of the E-2 Company Where I am Currently Employed?

Can I Work for Multiple Companies on an E-2 visa? Can I Work for a Subsidiary of the E-2 Company Where I am Currently Employed?

There are a few different types of E-2 visas, including the E-2 Investor visa, the E-2 Employee visa and the E-2 dependent visa. You can read more about the different types of E-2 visas here and here. E-2 dependent spouses can apply for an employment authorization card (EAD) once they arrive in the United States and can work anywhere using this EAD. E-2 dependent children are not permitted to work, but may attend school in the United States.

E-2 investors and E-2 employees are more restricted in their employment. Generally, E-2 investors and employees are only permitted to work at the E-2 company that was registered at a U.S. Consulate or approved by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) at the time they applied for the E-2 visa. If E-2 investors or employees want to perform work for a different company or there is a substantive change in the work they are doing, they must file an amended petition with USCIS or inform the relevant U.S. Consulate of the change and submit updated documentation.

However, under 8 CFR 214.2(e)(8)(ii), working for a subsidiary of a parent company will not be considered a “substantive change” requiring an amended petition to USCIS if at the time the E status was determined, the applicant provided information about the parent-subsidiary relationship and demonstrated that the subsidiary company independently qualified as an E-2 company. For E-2 employees, the work to be performed at the subsidiary must be of a supervisory or executive nature or require specialized or essential skills, and the work performed at the subsidiary must be consistent with their job duties at the parent company.

This means that in certain circumstances, E-2 investors and employees can work for a subsidiary of the E-2 parent company without filing an amended petition. Since the regulations require that any subsidiary company must have independently qualified for an E-2 at the time the status was granted, if a company wants their E-2 employee to work for one of their subsidiaries they will need to plan ahead. During the application process the applicant will need to demonstrate that the subsidiary company or companies meet all the E-2 requirements, including having a treaty country nationality, making a substantial investment, showing a legitimate source of funds and all other E-2 requirements. For a full list of E-2 requirements, click here. The job duties at the subsidiary company will also need to be consistent with the job that the E-2 employee performed at the parent company.

The Department of State has not incorporated the language of the regulations about E-2 subsidiaries into the Foreign Affairs Manual used by U.S. Consulates, so it is a good idea to contact the relevant U.S. Consulate when contemplating switching an employee between related companies to check on their preferred procedure. Although limited in scope, this regulation can be helpful for companies that have many U.S. subsidiaries and want their E-2 employees to be able to perform work at these companies without having to submit amended petitions each time the employee moves to a different subsidiary.

To find out more about our immigration and business services, contact Scott Legal, P.C.


Ian E. Scott, Esq. is the Founder of Scott Legal, P.C. He can be reached at 212-223-2964 or by email at

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September 28th, 2016|10 Comments


  1. Matthew August 9, 2018 at 8:58 pm - Reply

    I am from the uk on an E2 visa which states I can only work for the company printed on my visa, the work for them has came to an end does this mean I have to leave the country or can I work for another company doing the same kind of work?

    • IanScott August 25, 2018 at 9:38 pm - Reply

      The visa is only good for the company it was issued for so you must leave after the employment ends. (after the grace period).

  2. James August 6, 2018 at 1:52 pm - Reply


    I am on an E2 Visa for a finance company. During my spare time, I do some non-paid acting as a hobby. I just got a part in a short film where they are paying their actors. Can I get paid by a production company while being working for my company on an E2 visa?


    • IanScott August 9, 2018 at 4:17 am - Reply

      You can only receive payment from the e-2 employer.

  3. Joe March 6, 2018 at 7:49 pm - Reply

    Hi there.
    I’m on a E-2 employee visa in the states, and planning to open up an own company. Do I have to file a new E-2 Investor visa, when I’m still working part time at the E-2 visa company my visa is for?
    What are the chances / time frame for getting a E-2 investors visa?


    • IanScott March 9, 2018 at 4:43 am - Reply

      You would need a new visa. Please contact us to set up a one hour consultation.

  4. Federica August 17, 2017 at 2:04 am - Reply

    Hello, my husband is on a E2 Visa but he would like to change the company.
    He has a pending adjustment of status, based on my Status of green card holder (as spouse of a Green Card holder). We filed both the I-130 and the I-145.
    Which is the quickest way to be allowed to work for another company?

    • IanScott August 17, 2017 at 2:47 am - Reply

      Hello, when the I-485 is filed, he can file for work authorization with that and could work for other companies once that EAD comes through.

  5. Rand. October 1, 2016 at 2:41 am - Reply

    Hi there. I have a question on this matter. For a person who has E-2 dependent visa and got her work authorization card (as it seems she can work anywhere) can she work in the spouse E-2 business ?


    • IanScott October 5, 2016 at 4:43 am - Reply

      Yes. An E-2 spouse can work at the E2 business once he/she obtains work authorization.

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