E2 visa trends for 2022
New year, new business! This year, I’m happy to announce that our firm has already received so many calls and emails from people all over the world looking to make a change in 2022. They’re ready to start or buy a business in the U.S. and move their families here. We are ready to help! The new year brings new trends in E2 visas, and these trends are likely to continue for at least the next 6-12 months. Of course, things in U.S. immigration are always changing. But for now, this is what we are seeing.
“I want to move for Florida”
I hear this every day. Florida is THE hot state for E2 visas. Although it has always been popular for a variety of reasons – great weather, favorable taxation, beaches – the reasons are now a little more about freedom. Many clients want to move from a country they feel is too restrictive toward business owners. These countries have had multiple lockdowns and appear to be moving in a direction that is unfavorable toward the entrepreneur. Florida is a great option for these entrepreneurs! Florida has been notoriously open since 2020, and U.S. citizens are also moving there at incredible rates.
Other popular states include Arizona and Texas. These states also have favorable weather conditions and are much more “open” states that are business friendly.
The great news is that U.S. immigration law is federal – not state-based. This means that the laws that apply for E2 visas for those moving to Arizona are the same as those that apply to people moving to Florida, Vermont, Hawaii or California. We have clients who are interested in moving to many different states, and we can help you – no matter what state interests you.
“We need a backup plan in case of political upheaval”
So many countries are going through tough times right now – not only due to COVID, but due to political issues. Many countries are becoming more and more dependent on the government, which means that business owners are feeling the squeeze. Entrepreneurs looking to continue running a business or to grow a business need a place that allows for free entrepreneurship and capitalism. The United States has been and is still the best place in the world for entrepreneurs.
“Aren’t the consulates closed?”
Slowly but surely, the consulates around the world are getting back to business. This is an amazing trend for our E2 visa investors. Most consulates have shorter wait times than even three months ago, and this trend will likely continue. That said, the interviews aren’t coming as quickly as they did in 2019, but things are moving in the right direction. If things continue at this pace, it’s predicted that wait times will be back to “normal” before the end of the year. Great news! Particularly considering that most investors take a few months to get the application documents and apply. Those investors beginning the E2 visa process in January may be able to have considerably shorter wait times than those who are currently submitting their E2 visa applications.
In addition, the U.S. Department of State recently announced that many visa applicants no longer need to attend interviews. Although this unfortunately does not include E2 visa investors (who still need to attend interviews), the interview docket has cleared considerably. Now E2 visa applicants are no longer waiting “in line” behind a variety of other applicants. In this way, interview wait times for E2 visa applications should be shortened.
“My spouse needs to work – can they get a permit quickly?”
Yes! As of November 2021, spouses of E2 visa investors are allowed to work “incident to status.” This means that they won’t necessarily need a separate work permit in order to work in the U.S. There are still a few questions about filling out the I9 (the government form employers need in order to ensure that employees are authorized to work in the U.S.), but we are told that this issue will be resolved by March 2022. So, wait time for spouse eligibility to work has decreased from 5-6 months in 2021 to only a few days in 2022. Great news for entrepreneurs and their families!
“I’m interested in starting my own business”
The E2 visa is great for those who are looking to buy businesses, but in 2022 we are hearing many E2 visa investors looking to start their own business. Maybe it’s an (almost) post-COVID reaction, or maybe it’s just the way people are thinking of entrepreneurship; but it’s clear that people are looking for the freedom of starting their very own business in the U.S. Of course, purchasing a business or a franchise works, as well; but it seems to be trending down a bit as of late.
Either way – we love entrepreneurs! We help E2 visa applicants because we love the entrepreneur spirit and helping people fulfill their American Dreams. We’re here for you and ready to get to work. Reach out anytime to discuss your U.S. business. 2022 is your year. Let’s do this!