What is the E-1 Treaty Trader Visa?

MediaModifier.  Pixabay

MediaModifier. Pixabay

E-1 Treaty Trader visas are for citizens of certain countries to be admitted to the United States solely to engage in international trade on his or her own behalf. 
Requirements for Treaty Trader
The purpose of this visa is to enhance or facilitate economic and commercial interaction between the United States and the treaty country. In order to qualify for an E-1 visa, the applicant must meet the following requirements:

  • Be a national of a country with which the United States maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation
  • Carry on substantial trade
  • Carry on principal trade between the United States and the treaty country which qualified the treaty trader for E-1 classification.

What constitutes as trade?

Trade is the existing international exchange of items of trade for consideration between the United States and the treaty country.  Items of trade include but are not limited to: goods,  services, international banking, insurance, transportation, tourism, technology and its transfer, and some news-gathering activities.

Substantial trade generally refers to the continuous flow of sizable international trade items, involving numerous transactions over time.  There is no minimum requirement regarding the monetary value or volume of each transaction. 

Principal trade between the United States and the treaty country exists when over 50% of the total volume of international trade is between the U.S. and the trader’s treaty country.

Can I bring my spouse and children? 

Yes, spouse and children may qualify for E-1 Dependent Visas to travel with or accompany to join the principal E-1 Visa holder. The dependents may have a different nationality than the principal. In addition, the E-1 spouse may apply for employment authorization and is not limited to working at the E-1 enterprise.
How long is the visa issued for?

An E-1 visa may be issued for two years and may be renewed indefinitely in 2-year increments. 

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