E-1 is a non-immigrant visa, meaning that you cannot plan to remain in the U.S. permanently and you cannot plan to obtain a green card. When applying for an E-1 visa, you will have to demonstrate that you are only planning to come to the U.S. for a specific period of time.
One advantage of the E-1 visa is that you can bring employees from your home treaty country to the U.S. on an E-1 employee visa. There are 2 categories of employees that can come to the U.S. on an E-1 employee visa: (i) supervisor, manager, or executive, or (ii) specialized/essential employee.
Let’s analyze the following scenario: You are from the UK, you own a 100% in the E-1 company, and you are in the U.S. on an E-1 treaty trader visa. You brought several employees from the UK to the U.S. and the employees are here on an E-1 employee visas. You got married to a U.S. citizen and you could apply for a green card. The question then arises if you can keep your E-1 employees once you become a green card holder.
The short answer is no. Once you become a green card holder, you would no longer hold an E-1 non-immigrant status and you would become a green card holder. Therefore, the E-1 employees could no longer qualify for the E-1 employee visa.
How can I keep the employees in the U.S.?
If you want to keep the E-1 employees, here are 2 options:
- Stay in the U.S. on an E-1 treaty trader visa
If you married a U.S. citizen, getting a green card is not mandatory. You can stay in the U.S. on the E-1 treaty trader visa. One issue that could come up when renewing your E-1 visa/entering the U.S. could be that the immigration officer questions your non-immigrant intent since you married a U.S. citizen.
- Bring the employees to the U.S. on a different visa
You can read our blog post on whether you have to keep a residence in your home country when you click here.
FREE E-1 Visa Resources
Click on the buttons below in order to claim your free E-1 Visa Guide, sign up for our free E-1 Visa Webinar, or watch our E-1 Visa videos.
Set up an E-1 Visa Consultation
For a dedicated one-on-one E-1 Visa consultation with one of our lawyers, click on the button below to schedule your consultation.
This website and blog constitutes attorney advertising. Do not consider anything in this website or blog legal advice and nothing in this website constitutes an attorney-client relationship being formed. Set up a one-hour consultation with us before acting on anything you read here. Past results are no guarantee of future results and prior results do not imply or predict future results. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits.