Treaty Trader and Treaty Investor Visas 

Treaty Trader (E-1) and Treaty Investor (E-2) visas are for citizens of countries with which the United States maintains treaties of commerce and navigation. The United States and Brazil do not have such a treaty. However, if you are a Brazilian citizen who also holds dual citizenship from a country with which the United States does have a treaty, you may apply for an E-1 or E-2 visa. For a list of participating countries, see Treaty Countries  (English only).

You must be coming to the United States to:

  • Develop and direct the operations of an enterprise in which you have invested a substantial amount of capital, or
  • Be employed to engage in duties of an executive or supervisory character, or if employed in a lesser capacity, have special qualifications which are essential to the efficient operation of an E-1/E-2 business.

You may apply for E-1 and E-2 visas only at the U.S. Consulates General in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.

Application Package Requirements

Prior to applying for your E visa, you must prepare your application package.  The U.S. Consulates General Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro require E-visa applicants to submit their application packages in compliance with the instructions below.  Failure to follow the specified format and instructions may result in rejection of the application.

Instructions for E-2 Visa Application Packages

Please adhere to the following format and instructions in submitting your application.  Applicants must use a five tab (section) format, in the same order as below, with the required content in each section.  Please also provide page numbers on each page to allow for easier reference. Applications not complying with the format below, including the maximum page count, may not be accepted by the E-visa Unit.

Maximum page count of 80 (excluding Tab 1) 

TAB 1 – Visa Documentation

  • DS-160 form confirmation page for applicant and dependents.
  • Form DS-156E on behalf of the principal applicant with Form G-28 (if represented by an attorney) signed by applicant/company representative.
  • Proof of qualifying derivative status (original marriage, birth and/or adoption certificates) if applicable as a dependent.
  • Photocopy of passport data pages for E visa applicant and all derivatives/dependents.

Note: For dual citizens, please include a copy of the biodata page for the applicant’s Brazilian passport in addition to the biodata page for the treaty-country passport.

TAB 2 – Summary Cover Letter

A cover letter describing company, position and beneficiary.

Each point below should be covered in no more than one paragraph unless otherwise noted.

  1. Description of company.
  2. Description of beneficiary, including qualifications to direct and develop the enterprise.
  3. Demonstrate how the enterprise and applicant meet each the following requirements (one paragraph per requirement and with references to supporting documentation. Please ensure that each item addresses the statutory requirements for this visa type, found at https://fam.state.gov/fam/09FAM/09FAM040209.html. Specific section information is included for your reference.):
    • Nationality of the individual and/or business (9 FAM 402.9-4(A) and 9 FAM 402.9-4(B).)
    • Original source of funds, and who has and has had possession and control of the funds. (9 FAM 402.9-6(B)(b)).

Note: Applicants must demonstrate how funds were originally generated or acquired.  A bank account by itself is not an original source of funding.

    • The applicant has invested or is actively in the process of investing (9 FAM 402.9-6(B)).  The nature and size of the existing investment must be explained with a reference to either standard financial statements or a detailed schedule of investments in Tab 3 and/or Tab 4.

Note: cash or other liquid, non-committed assets are not considered investments for E2 purposes.

    • Enterprise is a real and operating commercial enterprise, or will be in the immediate future (9 FAM 402.9-6(D)).  [For companies not yet operating, applicants must explain the necessary steps, including estimated costs and dates, required to make the company operational, with reference to a table detailing these steps in Tab 5.]
    • The investment is substantial (9 FAM 402.9-6(E)).
    • Investment is more than a marginal one solely for earning a living (9 FAM 402.9-6(F)).
    • Applicant is in a position to “develop and direct” the enterprise (9 FAM 402.9-6(G)).
    • Applicant, if an employee, is destined to an executive/supervisory position or possesses skills essential to the firm’s operations in the United States (9 FAM 402.9-6(B) and (C)).
    • The applicant intends to depart the United States when the E-2 status terminates (9 FAM 402.9-4(C)).

TAB 3 – Company Detail

  • Organization chart showing ownership and all legal entities.
  • Financial Statement Requirements for going concerns:
    • Balance sheets and income statements for the last three years (and year-to-date if appropriate).
    • Tax statements for the last three years.
  • Financial Statement Requirements for new companies:
    • Current detailed balance sheet showing all assets and liabilities accumulated to date.
    • Year-to-date income statement showing all expenses and revenue (if any) to date.

TAB 4 – Supporting Documentation

Provide supporting documentation for the items described in Section 3 of the Cover Letter.  Documentation should be clearly labeled and in the same order as the Cover Letter.

At a minimum this should include:

  • Documentation showing business formation and ownership.  Only specific pages (from articles of formation, business registration, etc.) directly relevant to formation or ownership need to be provided.
  • Proof of origination of the investment funds, including documentation of bank transfers and original source of funding (e.g. how were the funds generated?).
  • For companies that do not provide audited financial statements (Tab 3), include documentation on all major expenses, revenue sources, asset, and liabilities.
  • For start-up companies, provide a list of investments made, showing the date and description of each investment, followed by proof of each material transaction (invoices, bank statements, cancelled checks, etc.).
  • Provide tax forms (W-4 and/or W-2) for existing employees.

See 9 FAM 402.9-11(B) for additional documentation suggestions if needed.

TAB 5 – Business Plan and Resume

Business plans should include:

  • Five-year financial projection
  • Five-year personnel projection
  • For start-up companies, a table with amounts, target dates, and descriptions, of all costs required to make the enterprise operational.

Resume demonstrating applicant’s qualifications to direct and develop the enterprise.

Apply for an E Visa

To apply for an E visa, the “principal visa applicant” who intends to work in the United States, must complete the DS-160 form, pay the online application fee(s), and schedule an appointment at one of our Applicant Service Centers (ASCs) to submit required biometric information (fingerprint scans and photograph).

These steps are the same as the standard visa application process.  For details please see Steps 1 and 2 under the “Apply for Visa” section on the Nonimmigrant Visa page.

You must apply for the E-2 Visa in either Sao Paulo or Rio de Janeiro.  However, you may still visit the closest ASC to submit your biometric information and photo.

During your ASC appointment, your photo and fingerprints will be taken.  Please note that you will not have an interview with a consular officer the same day as the ASC appointment.

Next, you must e-mail your application packet to the consulate, including an explanation of  your business proposal and the nature of your qualifying investment.  Please send your documentation to: VistosESaoPaulo@state.gov.

Attention: the entire package must meet the requirements described in the “Instructions for E-2 Visa Application Packages” above and must be less than 20MB in size.

Packages over the allowed limit will not be accepted and will delay your process.  We do not accept zip files or online shared folders. Please review your submission before sending to ensure that all documents have been scanned with sufficient resolution and are readable.

Case review takes approximately ten business days after you submit the documentation electronically.  As soon as your documents are reviewed, you will receive a notification with the date and time of your interview at the Consulate.  Please do not schedule an interview before that time. 

During your ASC appointment, your photo and fingerprints will be taken. Please note that you will not have an interview with a consular officer the same day as the ASC appointment.

Next, you must e-mail your application packet to the consulate with an explanation of your business proposal and the nature of your qualifying investment. Please send your documentation to VisaRio@state.gov. E-2 visa applications generally contain a large number of documents and therefore require a more extensive review prior to the visa interview.

As soon as your documents are reviewed, you will receive a notification from the appointment system to schedule your interview at the Consulate. Please do not schedule an interview before that time.

Attention: the entire package must meet the requirements described in the “Instructions for E-2 Visa Application Packages” above and must be less than 20MB in size

We do not discuss prospective E-visa applications or respond to speculative questions on E-visa applications by telephone or by email. Once an application has been submitted, we will communicate with the company’s attorney/ point of contact.

Please do not contact the Consular section for information on the status of your case.  You will be contacted for additional information or to schedule your interview.

If the principal applicant and/or any dependents have ever been arrested, cautioned, or convicted, it is necessary to send the court documents showing the charges, completion of all required activities, and the resolution of the case. This will not count towards the 80 page limit.

For Immediate Family Members/Dependents

Immediate family members/dependents of the principal visa applicant (spouses or children under age 21) may apply to accompany him or her to the United States.

Dependents are generally included when the principal applicant applies for their E visa.  If applying separately, the application procedure for immediate family members is the same as for the principal visa applicant, described above (without the need to resubmit the application packet). Please check the “Apply for Visa” section on Nonimmigrant Visa page detailed information.

In addition to the standard documents required for all U.S. visa applications, they must present the following additional documents during their visa interview:

  • Marriage/Birth Certificates/Adoption Papers showing relationship to the principal visa applicant.
  • A copy of the principal visa holder’s valid E visa.

Note: Applicants under 14 or over 79 years of age may not have to appear for a personal interview.  Please access the “Applicants Under 14 or Over 79” section on the Nonimmigrant Visas page for more information.

Spouses holding a derivative E visa may seek employment authorization. Please contact the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) (English only) upon your arrival to the United States.

Applicants with questions for the Consulate General in Sao Paulo can contact the E-visa office by e-mail at VistosESaoPaulo@state.gov.

The E-visa team will respond within two business days (48 hours).

Applicants with questions for the Consulate General in Rio de Janeiro can contact the Visa office by email at VisaRio@state.gov.

More information about E-1 and E-2 visas is available at the U.S. State Department’s webpage on Treaty Trader and Investor Visas. (English only)