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The E1 visa and E2 visa checklist below provides a general idea of what is usually needed for employees who are executives, supervisors, or staff with special skills that are essential to successfully or efficiently run the business operations in the United States to obtain their E1 visa or E2 visa work visa. To have a better understanding of this list, please read the E1 visa overview for employees of treaty traders or the E2 visa overview for employees of treaty investors for the big picture and go through E1 visa requirements and documents (employee) or the E2 visa requirements and documents (employee) for the details of what is included as evidence.


Please click to download the E1 visa & E2 visa (employee) checklist for the employees of treaty traders or treaty investors.


The overall emphasis on the documents and requirements/criteria of a E1 visa and E2 visa petition is that the job duties must show the employee and employer have the same treaty country nationality and that the employee has the appropriate job duties and qualifications to perform as a manager or executive, or staff who has specialized skills that is needed to successfully or efficiently run the business operations in the United States. The employee under the E1 visa or the E2 visa is specifically coming to the United States to assist the E1 visa treaty trader or the E2 visa treaty investor (business owner or business entity) and thus is typically not allowed to change to a different employer unlike most temporary work visas. 

The requirements for a E1 visa or E2 visa petition are extensive and while ticking the boxes of requirements sounds simple enough, figuring out what items should be included and strategizing how the petition is presented is not. It is common practice and strongly encouraged to obtain an attorney for employment-based nonimmigrant visa petitions.

Alternatives to the E1 Visa or E2 Visa Petition for Employees

For people who do not qualify for the E1 visa or E2 visa work visa petition, the closest alternatives would be filing for an L1A visa or an L1B visa petition which is for employees who are either a manager or executive or a person who has specialized knowledge of a multinational company, or an H1b visa petition (Australians can file for E-3 visa petitions), or a TN visa petition (for Canadian or Mexicans) to work in the United States.

Another possible alternative to filing an E1 visa or E2 visa petition for an employee of a treaty trader would be to file for a green card petition which is a permanent immigrant visa and not a temporary work visa like the E1 visa or E2 visa. Typically, an employee who is qualifiable for an E1 visa or E2 visa would choose to file for an EB1c green card (for executives or managers of multinational companies), an EB2 green card (for persons who have at least a master’s degree or a bachelor’s degree and 5 years of post-college progressive work experience), or an EB3 green card (for persons who has at least a Bachelor’s degree). For more on green cards gained through work, please read the overview for employment-based green cards.


If you have an E1 visa or E2 visa (Treaty Trader or Treaty Investor Employee) immigration question, please fill out our contact us form or send us an email with some basic information about your background and your immigration needs. We will do our best to respond within 48 hours.

How we can help?

Kylie Huang Law’s immigration attorney will help identify whether the E1 visa or E2 visa is the appropriate nonimmigrant visa category for the client’s (or the client’s beneficiary’s) professional background and if there are other visa options for the client (or the client’s beneficiary). We will work closely with our client to prepare a convincing case for their (or it’s) E1 visa or E2 visa petition and we will also strategize on how the E1 visa or E2 visa petition should be presented to achieve the best chances of approval. It is strongly advised and common practice to retain an immigration attorney for an E1 visa or E2 visa petition due to the complexities in the immigration process and visa requirements.

What does the typical process look like to retain (hire) us?