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US E-2 Visa through Grenada’s citizenship

25 October 2021

E-2 visa program

The United States of America’s E-2 Visa is an investor visa program, which allows investors and their families to live and work in the United States by making a substantial investment in a US entity. A treaty investor may either start or invest in a business in the US in order to be eligible for the visa.

This program is exclusive to citizens of any country that has signed an E 2 treaty with the US.

There are currently 81 countries that have signed an E-2 treaty with the USA. New Zealand being the most recent country to sign the treaty on 10th June 2019.

Investors must meet the following criteria:

  1. The investment is not a passive investment and is in an active business that operates in the US.
  2. The investor must hold a share of at least 50% of the business.
  3. The invested business must generate profits and revenue that are proven to provide income for the investor, their families, as well as other families in the United States.

Family members, which include the applicant’s spouse and dependent children (unmarried and under 21) are also beneficiaries of the E2 visa.

Spouses of main applicants may be permitted to work in the country if an “Employment Authorization” is approved by the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services. On approval, they are free to take on any type of employment, without any limitations. An E2 visa can be obtained within a period of 90 days.

US E2 visa

How to move to the USA with a Grenadian passport

The Grenadian Government has signed the E 2 treaty with the USA. This entitles all citizens of Grenada to obtain the E 2 visa via an investment of a “substantial” amount in a US entity. Usually, the minimum investment is at least $100,000, which is substantially lower than the EB 5 visa requirement. However, depending upon the type of business and its location, investments below the $100,000 threshold may be accepted for the E 2 visa. Unlike the EB 5 visa

The procedure for applying for an E 2 visa is as follows:

  1. Ensure that the US entity meets the E 2 visa immigration requirements
  2. Fill the DS-160 Form
  3. Pay the application fees and schedule an appointment at the US Embassy in Grenada
  4. Attend an interview at the US Embassy in Grenada

Once the interview is booked it is important that the applicant carries a list of documents that should be prepared in consultation with a professional immigration law firm.

Below is a summary of the list of documents:

  1. Filled DS-160 Form
  2. Valid Passport
  3. Two photographs that follow the US Embassy guidelines
  4. Visa application payment confirmation receipt
  5. Proof of ties with Grenada: This can be proven in the form of property ownership papers
  6. Proof that you are investing in a business that is viable and substantial:
  7. Business bank statements
  8. Tax returns
  9. Company organizational chart
  10. Business registration documents
  11. Company licenses
  12. Contracts with employees
  13. Contracts with clients
  14. Personal and business bank statements
  15. Business plan

Visa Interview

The final stage before getting your E2 visa is appearing for an interview at the US Embassy in Grenada.

Processing times differ from case to case and can take anywhere between two weeks and four months.

Period of Stay

Approved applicants and their family members are free to live in the US initially for a period of five years. Thereafter, extensions can be applied for every two years and there is no limit on the number of extensions that can be applied for.

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Grenada E2 visa treaty with the United States of America

The E2 treaty between Grenada and the United States of America was signed by form US President, Ronald Raegan in 1983.

Grenada is the only Caribbean country that has a bilateral agreement with the USA for the E 2 visa. The US E 2 visa allows Grenadian citizens to make a substantial investment in an active U.S. company, and in return reap the benefits of a life in the United States. This US E 2 visa allows an investor to live and work in the country.

The treaty states that Grenadian passport holders are welcome to invest a “substantial amount” in any US business, as long as the entity meets the E2 treaty guidelines, and the investor acquires a share of at 50% of the company. The treaty between the two countries has resulted in a mutually beneficial proposition, as Grenada now attracts more investors for their CBI program from non-treaty countries, and in turn, the US gains investors for the E2 program.

Benefits for investors

The US E 2 visa provides benefits for both the primary applicants (the investor), and their family members.

Below are some of the program’s key benefits for a treaty investor:

  1. There is no limit on the number of E2 renewals as long as the registered E 2 company continues to follow and operate within the E 2 visa guidelines.
  2. There is no taxation on worldwide income for E 2 visa holders as long as they do not spend more than 120 days per year in the US.
  3. Spouses of E 2 visa investors are allowed to work in the US by obtaining an Employment Authorization.
  4. Free education in US public schools and dependent children of E 2 up to 21 years of age do not have to pay the same tuition cost as an international student.
  5. E 2 visa holders are permitted to travel in and out of the United States without any restrictions

USA E-2 Visa through Grenada citizenship

How to get Grenada Citizenship

Grenada is one of the five Caribbean Island countries which have a Citizenship by Investment Program (CBI). The Grenada CBI is designed to offer citizenship to individuals who would like to obtain a Grenada passport at a low cost, particularly those looking for a strong second passport.

The Government conducts strict due diligence on the applicant to ensure that they are of good moral standing, with no criminal record. The Government of Grenada also grants citizenship conditional to the applicant’s “good health”.

Ultimately, if all criteria are met for the Government’s due diligence, any high net worth individual is eligible to apply for the Grenada CBI program.

Grenada offers two routes to obtain citizenship:

  1. a donation of US $150,0000 per individual applicant
  2. an investment of US $220,000.00 in a government-approved real estate project. Additionally, applicants must also make a minimum donation to the Government of US $50,000.00 (up to a family of 4 persons). Children up to the age of 30 years, and parents above 55 can be added to the Grenada CBI application under one single investment. All applications are reviewed on an individual basis and are subject to refusal. Investing in real estate to become a citizen is a good way to recoup the majority of the initial investment, and it is one of the better investment options for larger families as the initial real estate investment remains the same.

Below is a sample of the fees involved: 

Fees for a principal applicant include:

  1. a. Application & Government fees –  US$ 1,500.00
  2. b. Processing fees –   US$ 1,500.00
  3. c. Due diligence fees – US$ 5,000.00

Fees are payable in two parts:

1) Application, Due Diligence, Processing, and Agent’s fees are due at the point the application is ready to be submitted to the CBI Office. It is important to note that these fees are non-refundable.

2) The investment amount is due upon approval of the applicants citizenship.

The processing time for the application is approximately 60 to 90 days after the application is submitted to the CBI committee This is provided that all the documents are in order. 

All applicants must get in touch with authorized ‘Marketing Agents’ and a law firm based in Grenada, to assist them with the process. These marketing agents and immigration lawyers in Grenada will provide applicants with all the application forms, and a checklist of required supporting documents.

Once they review the documents and are satisfied that they are correctly completed, they will request applicants to send them via courier service for submission to the CBI Office.

USA E-2 Visa through Grenada citizenship

Grenada Citizenship-by-Investment for Indians

The Grenadian citizenship by investment programme (CBI) has been growing in popularity amongst Indians in recent years.

Below are some of the advantages for Indians who obtain a Grenada Passport via the Grenada CBI programme:

  1. A Grenada passport grants international visa-free travel to over 153 countries including the Schengen region, China and Russia. Indian citizens on the other hand are required to obtain a visa to over 170 countries. This visa-free access is one of the main reasons why Indians chose to obtain citizenship in Grenada.
  2. E 2 visa treaty has not been signed with India, and hence the Grenada citizenship by investment program is a quick and cheap option for Indians who intend to live and work in the US.
  3. Indians who obtain Grenada citizenship is that there is no foreign income tax, real estate tax, wealth tax, inheritance tax, or gift tax.
  4. An international business or corporation that is established under the International Companies Act, are completely exempt from corporate tax on any worldwide income, and for trade or commerce that is conducted outside Grenada.

The Indian Government, however, does not allow Indian passport holders the option of dual citizenship. This means that Indians who take up Grenada citizenship can not use it as their second passport must renounce their Indian passport.

Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) Card

There is an option to apply for an Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) card for Indians who chose to renounce their citizenship.

This is a permit that is granted by the Ministry of External Affairs in India to any persons of Indian origin and their spouses. The OCI card works as a permit that grants the right to live and work indefinitely in the country.

It is important to note that the main difference between an OCI card holder and an Indian passport holder is that, an OCI card holder is not entitled to vote in Indian elections, hold public office, and own agricultural land in their name.

The Grenada CBI programme continues to attract several Indians, despite the fact that dual citizenship is not permitted for Indian passport holders.

Do Grenadians need US visa?

A Grenadian does need a US visa for all forms of travel, including business, tourism, and work. All applications can be made to the US Embassy in the island of Barbados, which is an island member nation located 261 kilometers east of Grenada. Grenada citizenship does not allow for visa-free travel to the US.

Can Grenada citizens work in the US?

Grenada citizens can work in the US with an approved and valid visa that allows investors to work or run a business in the United States. There are 81 countries including Grenada that have a bilateral treaty with USA for the E-2 investor visa. This gives citizens access to live and work in the US. A spouse of the E2 investor can also gain access to an Employment Authorization in order to work freely in the US.

Can E 2 visa lead to green card?

Unlike the EB 5 visa, the E2 does not lead to a Green Card. The E 2 visa is classified as a ‘non-immigrant visa’ and is subject to renewals every two years. The only way to ‘convert’ an E 2 visa to a green card is via an immigrant visa category. The following categories can help applicants obtain a green card- EB 5 visa; Company Sponsored Green Card; EB-1 A (for those with extraordinary ability); National Interest Waiver; or a Marriage based Green Card.

Does Grenada allow dual citizenship?

Grenada does allow dual citizenship, which makes it popular citizenship by investment programme. However, if the applicant is the holder of a passport who’s nation does not allow dual citizenship, he/she must make a decision to renounce that citizenship if they want to take up Grenada citizenship. With most countries allowing for dual citizenship, Grenada has become a popular route for many individuals who are looking for a second passport.

How do I get dual citizenship in Grenada?

To be eligible for Grenadian Citizenship, applicants must either make a donation (in USD) of $150,000 to the government’s National Transformation Fund or invest a minimum amount of $220,000 in a government-approved real estate investment. Once the investment or donation is made, a Grenada passport is issued to the applicant(s) within three to six months.

The donation amount of $150,000 benefits only one applicant. However, any investment in a government-approved real estate property can avail passports for their spouse, dependent children up to 30, dependent parents & grandparents above 65, and even dependent siblings who are above 18 years of age. In the case of a real estate investment, the investment in a property must be held for a minimum period of five years from the date of purchase of the property.

What is the wait time for obtaining an E2?

Processing time for the E2 immigration can take any from two weeks to three months. If the applicant does not hear back from the US consulate within this timeframe, it does not necessarily mean that the E2 petition is rejected.

Do any other Caribbean Islands have an E2 treaty with the US?

Apart from being able to add a spouse and dependent family members under one investment, the Caribbean Island of Grenada has an added advantage of an E2 treaty with the US. There is no other Caribbean passport that grants an access route to the US via the E2.

What happens to dependent children once they turn 21?

Dependent children will no longer qualify for renewals under the same E2 once they turn 21. There are different ways to structure an E2 for dependent children over 21. The first route is if the child acquires at least 50% of the existing E2 company that is owned by their parent. This will make the child eligible for an a fresh E2 . The second option is to apply for an E2 Employee permit, provided the child is of the same nationality as the parent, and they meet the requirements under the E2 treaty.

What can Migronis do for you?

Our expertise and professionally assembled team can help you create the best portfolio of citizenships, researching which second nationality suits your needs best and helping you acquiring it. We deal in citizenship by investment, providing a wide range of citizenship by investment programs that allow you to obtain citizenship and a passport to enter various countries visa free.

Our extensive knowledge of citizenship by investment not only helps you gain a passport that enables you to travel visa free, but allows you more financial freedom through more favorable tax regimes and banking options.

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