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Which Immigration Visa You Should Select As a Business Owner

Many immigrant small business owners are contributing extraordinarily to the American economy. In addition to generating huge employment, paying taxes and leading innovations, they are also contributing to American culture in a big way.

The promise of success in America leads many entrepreneurs and investors to American shores every year. According to official data, the American State Department issues more than 140,000 Visas in different categories.


In this article, we will discuss the different types of Visas you can avail of if you are an entrepreneur, small business owner, or investor. We speak to leading atlanta immigration attorneys from Manji Law and ask them to guide us through the maze of immigration and Visa requirements.

Immigration Visas versus Permanent Residency: What you need to know

The first thing, which you need to know about immigration Visas is that they can get very confusing. The legal processes can get very intimidating if you are not going through proper channels. However, all you need to know about are two main categories:

1. Immigration Visas

This kind of Visa is given for a stipulated period for professionals, businessmen and investors. Being for a specified time, these Visas need to be renewed by filing in the proper paperwork before the lapse. For example, H1-B Visas are given for a three-year period and can be renewed for another three years.

2. Permanent Residency

As compared to immigration Visas, the famed ‘Green Card’ or permanent residency allows immigrants to stay on and work in the USA for an indefinite period. Getting a Green Card is not easy and is subject to many legal criteria. If you are someone who wants to stay and reside in the USA, then you should try to get a Green Card or permanent residency.

What are the Best Visas for Business Owners and Entrepreneurs?

Many legal and immigration experts state that there are two kinds of Visas for entrepreneurs- ‘Investor Visas’ and ‘Extraordinary Ability Visas’.

E 1 and O 1 Visas: If you are an entrepreneur who wants to avail of the extraordinary ability visa, you need to have a lot of business success in your native homeland. This means that your business needs to be profitable and that the idea should be great. This is also open to people of repute in the various sciences, musical arts, sports, or education.

The legal term for this Visa is known as the E 1 category of Visas. There is also a small differentiation- the EB-1 Visa and the O-1 Visa. It is far more difficult to secure an EB-1 Visa as it stands for a permanent residency. The O-1 Visa is temporary in nature and has to be renewed after definite periods. 

E 5 Investor Visas: Investor Visas have a far greater success rate when it comes to approvals. Under an Investor Visa, you will need to invest in a business, which is based in the USA. The business can be your own business or a business owned and operated by someone in the USA.

It also involves setting up jobs or professional opportunities for Americans. This Visa is easier to get, even if the investment is not your own. Many entrepreneurs raise money in the form of secured loans and invest in American businesses.

The Final Word

In the last few years, the process of getting an entrepreneur Visa has become stricter. For example, the Investor Visa criteria of $1 Million USD has been raised to $1.8 Million USD. The authorities state it has been done to adjust for inflation. However, it is best to consult an immigration legal expert if you want to get a Visa in the USA.

This is not only going to help you save time, but also ensure that your application is not rejected because of faulty paperwork. If you have different business partners or other liabilities, an expert will be able to guide you in the best possible fashion.

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