While the E-2 status is not equivalent to a green card nor does it provide a pathway to citizenship, it does allow the E-2 holder an indefinite timeframe of stay as long as the investment enterprise is still in business. One of the benefits of the E-2 Treaty Investor is the ability for the principal to extend his status to his dependents as long as the principal maintains his status. Therefore, it is important that principal investors continue to maintain E-2 status or they may adversely affect the corresponding statuses of their dependents.
For example, let’s consider a non-immigrant who is in the United States as an E-2 Treaty Investor and has three
dependents, a wife and two children, who are also on E-2 status. The principal E-2 Treaty Investor becomes eligible for a U-Visa on
the basis of being a parent of a child who has become a victim of a crime. In this case, the E-2 principal investor is indeed eligible for a U-Visa as the parent of a victim. However, a non-immigrant is only allowed to hold one status at any given time. Therefore, if the E-2 principal elects to switch to a U-Visa, the E-2 child may potentially lose E-2 status and begin accruing unlawful presence in the United States once the transition is made.
As such, the principal investor should always strive to make sure that their business is economically profitable and should check with an immigration attorney of any immigration benefits they wish to pursue so that a full analysis of the immigration consequences may be done.