Navigating the E-2 Franchise Process: Your Comprehensive Guide

You are exploring options to migrate to the United States and realize that your journey could begin by starting a business within the U.S. as an E-2 investor. There are three ways to create a U.S. business for E-2 purposes: create a business from scratch, purchase an existing established business, or purchase a franchise.

But maybe you’re not too business savvy or you dread having to create a business concept from scratch, in this case, purchasing a franchise, also known as a “business in a box” could be your answer.

Unraveling the E-2 Investor Visa: A Digestible Franchise Approach

The E-2 Investor Visa is a gateway to your American business dreams. Under the E-2 visa program, foreign investors have the opportunity to invest in and manage a U.S.-based business. At the fundamental core of this visa is the concept of “E-2 investors” investing in the U.S. economy and creating job opportunities for U.S. workers. Franchising has revolutionized the way businesses expand, offering a tried-and-tested model for entrepreneurs to step into the realm of business ownership more easily.

Chris Wilson, a Franchise Consultant, from Legacy Franchise Ventures is your bridge to the world of franchising under the E-2 Visa umbrella. Chris is a seasoned professional who has not only mastered the art of franchise exploration but is also dedicated to empowering your endeavors. His expertise intertwines seamlessly with the guidance of Alice Burgos, an E-2 Visa Attorney, at Burgos Law to form a cohesive collaboration to light your path toward becoming an E-2 investor. Together, they can guide you from choosing a franchise to obtaining an E-2 investor visa.

Section 1: What You Want to Know About Franchises and Your Future E-2 Visa

Nationality Requirement: Focus on E-2 Treaty Countries

To qualify for an E-2 Visa, an investor must have the nationality of an E-2 country. E-2 treaty countries are those that have bilateral treaties with the U.S., granting their citizens access to this visa category. There are more than 60 E-2 treaty countries, some of which include Colombia, Canada, and the United Kingdom. E-2 Investors that hold one of these nationalities can leverage the franchise model to pave their way toward U.S. business ownership.

Franchise Fees: Substantial Initial Investment

The intertwining worlds of franchises and E-2 visas offer a promising avenue for business ownership. At the heart of this synergy lies a crucial factor: franchise fees. We will delve into the significance of franchise fees and how they constitute a substantial investment for the purpose of obtaining an E-2 Visa. The financial consideration of franchise fees establishes the cornerstone of many successful ventures, connecting the dots between franchise opportunities and visa eligibility.

One of the defining elements of a franchise is the franchise fee—a payment made by the franchisee to the franchisor for the rights to operate a business under their established brand. However, these fees hold a significance that goes beyond the surface. When pursuing an E-2 visa, these franchise fees are not merely financial transactions; they are critical components that establish the investor’s monetary commitment, financial risk, and bona fide intent to operate a business in the U.S.

The requirement for initially investing a “substantial” amount into the U.S.-based company is pivotal to obtaining an E-2 investor visa. This term “substantial investment” is relative and often raises questions as there is no minimum amount of investment that is legally required to obtain an E-2 visa. Rather, the initial investment amount is determined to be substantial if the amount is proportional to the type of business that the E-2 investor is planning to operate. For example, opening a brick-and-mortar restaurant may require a higher initial investment than opening a food truck company.

But franchise fees often provide a tangible answer to the substantial investment requirement. Typically, franchise fees, the financial commitment required to acquire a franchise, are treated as an initial substantial investment and serve as a tangible expression of the investor’s dedication and readiness to contribute significantly to the U.S. economy. Please note, franchise fees are set by the Franchisor and vary based on the Franchise.

Section 2: A Few Words from E-2 Visa Attorney
Attorney Alice Burgos’s expertise adds a crucial layer of insight to the E-2 Franchise Process. She provides you with invaluable guidance on the intricacies and nuances of the E-2 process within the context of franchises. Burgos Law can collaborate with your Franchise Consultant and Franchisor to coach you through the entire process to meet the requirements for immigration purposes. Therefore, it is vital for you to consult and retained a business immigration attorney prior to selecting a Franchise. Together, we will help you understand the immigration legal aspects of choosing a Franchise and starting your new business in the United States.

How low can my E-2 investment amount be? How much do I have to Invest to get an E-2 Visa?

Generally, the applicant should be prepared to invest at least $60,000 US dollars in the E-2 business to have an approvable E-2 visa case. Besides the Franchise Fee, there are additional costs involved in order to apply for your E-2 visa that count towards the intital investment amount such as a five-year business plan, operating agreement, company formation, immigration attorney fees, etc. Burgos Law can guide you on what additional investment costs will be required based on the business that you plan to operate.

How long will an E-2 visa be issued?

The duration for which an E-2 visa is issued depends on the reciprocity between your country and the United States. In general, most countries have an agreement with the United States to have E-2 visas issued for 3 to 5 years at a time and can be renewed. Here is the link to look up the reciprocity for your country:

Section 3: Advice from Franchise Industry Expert, Chris Wilson

Chris Wilson’s journey is a testament to the power of strategic planning and entrepreneurship. As a Franchise Consultant at Legacy Franchise Ventures and owner of multiple franchises, he draws upon his own experience to assist potential investors in finding the ideal franchise opportunity. With a plethora of franchise options available, Chris understands the overwhelming feelings that can arise, and his role is to streamline the process for you. He knows the questions that you likely need answers to, and his mission is to save you time, energy, and needless stress.

Chris can connect you, as a potential investor, with a franchise company that meets your lifestyle and financial goals. In his blog post, “What’s the best franchise to own?” Chris discusses how Selecting the ideal franchise amidst a multitude of options is a common inquiry, driven by the desire to choose a profitable and personally satisfying venture. He says, “The perfect franchise for one person may not be the right fit for another. Many factors come into play when owning a franchise: investment level, business model, scalability, and even the owner’s involvement with the franchise.” Just as there are various flavors of ice cream to suit individual preferences, franchises offer diverse opportunities tailored to unique aspirations. The suitability of a franchise hinges on multiple factors: investment level, business model, scalability, and the degree of owner involvement.

Are you ready to take the next step in your journey? Schedule a strategy session with Alice Burgos, the managing attorney at Burgos Law. For more information on Chris, please visit or call his office at 689-244-1914. Instagram: @lfvconsultants / Podcast: Winning Franchise Formula available on Apple Music and Spotify.