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Alert: New E-2 Application Procedures in Madrid, Spain

By December 14, 2023E-2 Visa
Madrid, Spain

On October 27, 2023, the U.S. Consulate in Madrid announced updated procedures that apply to E-2 visa applications starting at the end of November, 2023. Those who applied before November 2023 will not be affected by these changes.

In this post, we share the key updates and note several additional requirements that continue to apply to E-2 applications submitted to the U.S. Consulate in Madrid.

What were the changes to E-2 visa applications that the U.S. Consulate in Madrid announced?

The first notable change announced by the Consulate in Madrid is that they are aiming to reduce E-2 visa processing times to 90 business days. While as an average this is not a particularly fast processing time, it is notable that the Consulate is publicizing an aspirational limit to the amount of time a given application should remain pending.

What additional changes to E-2 visa applications were announced by the U.S. Consulate in Madrid?

The Consulate in Madrid announced that, starting at the end of November, 2023, E-2 visa applicants will be required to choose one of the following three options after they submit the DS-160 and pay the visa fee:

  • Option 1 if they are applying for an E-2 dependent visa as the spouse or child of someone who already has a valid E-2 visa.
  • Option 2 if they are applying for an E-2 visa in order to come to the U.S. to work for an E-2 company that already employs one or more E-2 employees.
  • Option 3 if they are applying for an E-2 visa and neither of the above two options applies to them. This option should be chosen by, for example, E-2 treaty investors who are either applying for an E-2 visa for the first time or renewing their E-2 visa.

Applicants who choose Option 1 or Option 2 will immediately be able to schedule their interview. They are not required to submit their supporting documentation in advance (supporting documentation includes those documents that prove that the applicant satisfies the E-2 visa requirements described here, including proof of ownership, substantial investment, source of funds, marginality, and any applicable civil documents such as marriage or birth certificates). Instead, the applicant must bring a printed copy of their supporting documentation to their interview.

In contrast, applicants who choose Option 3 (which, again, includes E-2 investors who are renewing or applying for an E-2 visa for the first time) are required to submit their supporting documentation to the Consulate by email before they will be permitted to schedule the interview. Once the Consulate has received and reviewed the supporting documentation, they will email the applicant and invite them to schedule their interview. The applicant must bring a printed copy of the supporting documentation with them to the interview.

For those who choose Option 3, how should they send supporting documents to the Consulate?

The U.S. Consulate in Madrid has a fairly unique set of requirements that apply to E-2 visa supporting document submissions. Applicants who choose Option 3 will need to carefully navigate these requirements to ensure that their application is not rejected. A complete description of the requirements can be found on the Consulate’s website here.

Among other things, the supporting documentation should be saved in two PDFs. The first PDF should contain the DS-156E form. The second PDF should include the supporting documents. The submission cannot be more than thirty pages, which can be a challenge when considering the variety of E-2 visa requirements that must be addressed and satisfied (described here). Fortunately, a number of items are excluded from this page limit, including the Form G-28 and tabs.

Once the applicant has gathered their supporting documents into the required format (described here), the two PDFs should be emailed to the Consulate at

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