Qualifications for the E-1 Treaty Traders classification

The E-1 nonimmigrant "Treaty Traders" classification offers people from countries with United States trading treaties to gain entry into the United States. The purpose is to allow the individual to enter the United States and carry out international trade activities. Since Canada has a trade/treaty agreement with the United States, Canadian residents who engage in this type of commerce may be able to qualify.

Here are the requirements for the E-1 classification:

-- Treaty traders must have the same nationality as their employer company, and the company must belong to a country with a U.S. trading treaty established.

-- The individual must meet the standard definition for "employee" listed in the relevant law.

-- The individual must be engaging in duties that are supervisory or executive in nature; or, alternatively, he or she must have a special qualification/skill.

-- In situations where the alien employer is a company and not an individual, the organization or business has to be 50 percent or more owned by individuals within the United States who are nationals of the treaty country. These individuals need to have already achieved nonimmigrant treaty trader status. Alternatively, if these company owners not in the United States, if they want to gain entry to the United States, they need to enter under the nonimmigrant treaty trader classification.

British Columbia residents who want to enter the United States may want to keep in mind that there are many avenues and options for doing so in addition to the E-1 Treaty Traders classification. By consulting with an immigration lawyer, individuals can identify the strategy to seek a United States visa that is most appropriate for their needs.

Source: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, "E-1 Treaty Traders," accessed Oct. 21, 2016

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