E-1 Visa Lawyers in Seattle

Assisting Clients With the Process of Obtaining E-1 Classification

Foreign nationals who wish to enter the United States for the purpose of conducting international trade may be eligible for an E-1 visa. However, in order to receive E-1 classification, the foreign citizen must observe specific eligibility requirements. Learn how E-1 visas work and why getting the help of an E-1 visa attorney may be the right choice for you. If you have visa-related questions, be sure to contact the team at Stelmakh & Associates, LLC by calling their Seattle office at 206-558-6288.

What Is an E-1 Visa?

An E-1 visa is a temporary visa that is available to citizens of other countries who wish to come to the United States to engage in international trade on their own behalf. The E-1 visa is reserved for treaty traders of countries with which the United States has a qualifying treaty of commerce and navigation or a valid trade agreement. The E-1 visa is valid for up to two years and may be consecutively renewed for periods of up to two years.

The E-1 visa also allows for the applicant’s spouse and any unmarried children under the age of 21 to accompany them; however, only the applicant’s spouse is allowed to obtain employment in the United States. The E-1 classification may also be extended to the employees of an individual or qualifying organization that has received an E-1 visa. The E-1 visa may be obtained by an eligible individual or employee already in the United States or may be obtained from outside the country by those who meet the qualifying criteria set forth by the USCIS.

What Are the Eligibility Requirements for an E-1 Visa?

In order to qualify for an E-1 visa, the foreign treaty trader must be a national of one of the countries with which the United States has treaties for E-1 visas. The list of countries includes Argentina, China, France, Italy, Netherlands, Sweden, Australia, Colombia, Germany, Japan, Norway, Switzerland, Austria, Costa Rica, Greece, Korea, Oman, Thailand, Belgium, Denmark, Honduras, Latvia, Pakistan, Togo, Bolivia, Estonia, Iran, Liberia, Philippines, Türkiye (formerly spelled Turkey), Brunei, Ethiopia, Ireland, Luxembourg, Spain, U.K., Canada, Finland, Israel, Mexico, Suriname, and Yugoslavia.

In addition, the visa holder should be ready to demonstrate that they plan to come to the United States to engage in substantial trade, with at least 50% of the trade volume consisting of physical or non-physical transactions between the United States and the designated treaty country. Trade transactions can include physical goods, transportation, or non-physical goods and services, such as insurance, banking, tourism, journalism, or technology. Finally, because the E-1 is a nonimmigrant visa, applicants should be ready to show that they intend to leave the United States and return to their country of origin after their visa expires.

What Are the Differences Between an E-1 and an E-2 Visa?

The E-1 visa is reserved for those who are engaging in international trade between the United States and their home country. In order to qualify for an E-1 visa, the foreign treaty trader must be a national of one of the countries with which the United States has treaties for E-1 visas, as listed above.

The E-2 visa, on the other hand, is for those who are investing a substantial amount of capital in a business within the United States. This capital must be at risk and committed to the enterprise, and the investor must be able to prove that they have the necessary financial resources to sustain the enterprise. In addition, the investor must be a national of one of the countries with which the United States has treaties for E-2 visas. Finally, the investor must demonstrate that they plan to enter the United States solely to direct and develop the business.

In other words, the E-1 visa is solely reserved for international treaty traders of certain countries, while the E-2 visa is meant for investors who intend to make a significant at-risk investment and enter the U.S. to develop or manage a business. In addition, the list of countries allowing E-2 applications is considerably longer, making it easier for foreign investors from many countries to apply for an E-2 visa. If you are not sure about which visa category is more suitable for your situation, be sure to speak with an attorney before proceeding with your application.

Why Should You Hire an E-1 Visa Before Sending an Application?

Before you invest time and money into preparing and sending an E-1 visa application to the USCIS, it is important to speak to a seasoned E-1 visa lawyer about your case. Your lawyer can review your application, help you ensure you meet all required qualifications, and determine if the E-1 visa is the right choice for you. At Stelmakh & Associates, LLC, you can get the services and professional advice you need to obtain your nonimmigrant work visa to the United States while avoiding common mistakes that can cause your application to be delayed or denied.

The E-1 visa application requires a significant volume of supporting documentation and has several steps and forms that must be submitted – overlooking any minor detail could result in your application being rejected. The attorneys at Stelmakh & Associates, LLC can ensure you don’t miss any details and can assist you with every step of the process – from preparing your documents to helping you prepare for an interview or responding to any communications from the USCIS. If you are considering getting an E-1 visa, have questions, or need assistance, please contact the Seattle office of Stelmakh & Associates, LLC by calling 206-558-6288 and requesting a free initial consultation to discuss your options and learn more about how we can help you.

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