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I want to apply for an E-1 employee visa. What categories of E-1 employees can come to the U.S. and work for the E-1 Company?

By April 17, 2020May 14th, 2021E-1 Visa, Immigration
Image courtesy of Nguyen Hung Vu on Flickr (labeled for reuse)

The E-1 visa is a great visa for treaty traders who engage in international trade between the U.S. and their home country. You can find more information on the E-1 visa requirements here.

An E-1 visa can be a great option for a manager, executive, supervisor, or specialist who wants to work as an employee of an E-1 business.

What are the requirements?

  1. The E-1 employer must have the nationality of the treaty country (if the employer is a business entity, than at least 50% must have the nationality of the treaty country).

 For example, if you are a national of Canada (Canada is an E-1 treaty country) and you set up an E-1 Company in the U.S., you will have to demonstrate that you own at least 50% in the U.S. entity. 

  1. The employer and the employee must have the same nationality

 If you are a national of Canada, then the E-1 employee also has to be Canadian. 

  1. The employer (unless residing outside the U.S.) must be maintaining the E -1 status in the U.S.

There are 2 categories of employees who could apply for an E-1 employee visa:

  • Supervisor, Manager, or Executive

If you want to apply for the E-1 employee visa under this category, you will have to demonstrate that you are coming to the U.S. to perform supervisory, managerial, or executive tasks. The Consulate will look at your job duties, title, place in the company’s organizational structure, the degree to which you will have the ultimate control and responsibility for the company’s overall operations, the number of employees you will supervise, your salary, and your prior experience.

  • Specialized/Essential Employee

If you want to apply for the E-1 employee visa under this category, you will have to demonstrate that you have special qualifications that make you essential to the efficient operation of the enterprise.

You can find out more about the specialized/essential employee category when you click here.

Can my spouse and children come to the U.S. if I get an E-1 employee visa?

Yes. Your spouse and children under 21 can apply for the E-2 visa and come to the U.S. Your spouse may apply for work authorization and after her/his work authorization application is approved, he/she may start working. You children may not work in the U.S. but they can study in the U.S.

If you want to find out whether E-1 visa is better than an E-2 visa, please click here.

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