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Benefits Of The E2 Visa – A Primer For Business Buyers And Sellers

This United States is a country of immigrants. Our foundation was built on the backs of the small business owners who came to this country to give their families a chance at a better life. While today’s anti-immigration news climate might seem to impede the path of those living abroad who have a desire to move to the United States – it doesn’t mean you can’t get here. The entrepreneurial American dream is still very much alive and well.


The United States allows several pathways for those who would like to come here and invest in a business – because those businesses help to strengthen the American economy and create jobs.


One of these pathways is by way of the E2 Visa.



An E2 Visa is an option worth considering if you are a foreign buyer because it allows a non-immigrant investor to come to the U.S. with their spouse and children to live and work so long as they invest in a business that qualifies for E2 status. There are rules to consider, such as whether or not the country where you hold citizenship will allow you to qualify for this type of Visa, but those answers can easily be found by checking the Department of Homeland Security U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services website, found here:


or by asking a qualified business broker who has experience with the E2 Visa process (like us!).


If you are a business seller, then this type of Visa could potentially be very important to you as well. If your business qualifies for E2 status, then you will be opening your business listing to a huge market of investor buyers who are looking for a way to come the the United States.


If you haven’t heard of getting your business qualified for the E2, don’t be surprised – there are not many brokers who are experienced in this type of transaction, and many falsely believe that throwing a Visa into the mix will slow a transaction down. While a Visa does add a few more steps (mostly on the buyer side of the table), in most cases the process will only be delayed by a few weeks – and quite frankly we have had more deals held up by the sellers themselves than we ever have by consulates evaluating E2 status.


If you think the E2 might be your path to entrepreneurship in the United States, don’t delay. There are great businesses for sale that currently meet the E2 requirements. If you haven’t asked about qualifying your business for the E2 Visa, please do by contacting us today! The more buyers who see you business as a potential investment opportunity, the better – so why limit yourself to only local and national buyers? Get your small business on the international scene and you will have a great chance of finding the right buyer.


For more information about the E2 Visa process, please also visit our sister site,


Are you a foreign buyer who is interested in the option to buy a business in the States with the E2? Are you a seller who wants to know if your business would qualify? Please feel free to leave any questions or comments here and we would be happy to help!




Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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Immigration And Foreign National Business Buyers: What’s In The News

● President Trump’s most recent proposal to end the government shutdown also comes with some major changes to the policies regarding requests for asylum from the children of Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador. The proposed changes will severely limit the number of applications for asylum from this group, as well as require that they apply for asylum in their home country and have a qualifying parent already living in the U.S. The severity of this new language will likely keep the proposal from passing, as Democrats are unlikely to agree to such changes.

● A federal judge reinstated the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program in it’s entirety – but then waked back his decision to include only those DACA recipients already in the program. No new applicants can start the process, but renewals can begin for those who already have DACA protections. The judge’s ruling stated the administration did not have sufficient reason to revoke the program entirely.

● The government says it has reunited all eligible migrant children with their parents. Some 2500 children were separated at the border, and the 700 that remain could not be approved for reunification because of concerns for the children’s safety or a parent’s criminal history.

● The immigration showdown in Congress and with the White House is far from over, with the polarization of each side spelling trouble for any potential compromise. At stake is the fate of DACA recipients who were accepted into the Obama-era program and the Dreamers at large who were brought to this country illegally as children and were either ineligible for DACA or did not apply. Also at stake is funding for the border wall with Mexico and increased spending on border security.

● The administration is also currently working on ending chain migration, where a current green card holder can sponsor someone like an adult child or parent to come to the US. The changes currently proposed would possibly limit sponsorship to spouses and minor children.

● Also on the chopping block is the Diversity Visa Program, where 50,000 Visas are issued annually to those coming from countries that have a low rate of migration to the US. This change will most likely influence those coming from African countries who currently receive the bulk of the Diversity Visas.

● USCIS (US Citizenship and Immigration Services) announced changes to the list of countries eligible for the H-2A and H-2B Visa Programs (non-immigrant temporary agricultural and non-agricultural worker Visas), adding Mongolia to the list and removing Belize, Haiti and Samoa. The removals occurred because these three nations were not meeting the requirements for eligibility – USCIS citied concerns over human trafficking (Belize), concerns that those granted the Visas were overstaying the terms (Haiti) or a home country refusing to accept the return of their nationals who were asked to be removed from the US (Samoa).

● The Attorney General of Washington State has sued Motel 6 over the handling of customer data. Motel 6 is accused of disclosing the private information of their guests to ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) agents without proper legal warrants. It is alleged that the ICE agents used that private customer data to find and arrest hotel guests in the country illegally.

● ICE has also tripled the number of arrests of undocumented immigrants who do not have criminal records. The crackdown has been met with backlash, like the city of Philadelphia refusing to renew a data-sharing contract with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.

Are you a foreign national who is considering a move to the United States, but have questions about what our current immigration news means for you? Are you a business owner who would like more information on how the possible immigration changes could affect the pool of foreign national business buyers? Ask us! Please contact us today! We would be happy to help.




Michael Monnot

5111 Ocean Boulevard, Suite E
Siesta Key, FL 34242

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The Current Immigration News Round-Up



Immigration has become a buzz word in our new cycle lately, and as such it might feel like for every five seconds that passes the immigration policy of our nation changes six times. While this is obviously an exaggeration, immigration news has become an every-evolving story, and recently there have been some very big news events in the immigration world.


Chief among them? The third iteration of Trumps travel ban is now out, and this newest version has kept the six countries on the second version plus three more, Chad, Venezuela and North Korea. The inclusion of North Korea is not surprising considering our current tensions with that country, and Venezuela’s inclusion isn’t surprising when you note that this only includes Venezuelan government officials. Chad’s inclusion on the list, however, is leaving some scratching their heads. The United States has a good relationship with the country of Chad and their military has recently worked to fight terrorist groups hand in hand with United States. The administration has been rather quiet on their reasoning for the inclusion of Chad, only saying that the countries listed are those who do not meet the requirements for information sharing and vetting of citizens before they are granted Visas to enter the United States.


This travel ban, like the two before it, has been partially blocked by two courts in the United States – one in Hawaii and another in Maryland. How these newest legal challenges play out and whether or not this issue will again have a chance of coming before the Supreme Court remains to be seen, but the legal challenges are again based on the notion that the travel ban is a Muslim ban – something the administration denies.


In other immigration news, USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) has resumed premium processing for those H-1B Visa petitioners who got their 2018 applications in before the cap of 65,000 was met in April. Premium processing of physician’s applications under the Conrad 30 program were also resumed. Premium processing was abruptly halted in April as the administration sought to begin an overhaul of the H-1B Visa program, which like the travel bans brought about protest from industry leaders who need the H-1B Visa in order to thrive.


What does all of this immigration news mean to current business owners within the United States? The pool of potential buyers for your business may shrink as investor Visas and the H-1B continue to remain under attack. If you are a foreign national looking to come to the United States, you should keep an eye on immigration changes, but you should not let the constantly negative news feed discourage you from keeping the U.S. as an option for your business investment.  Every attempted change to immigration policy has been met with both legal challenges and swift, vocal disagreement from industry leaders.


It is important to remember amidst all of the immigration fury that our nation is a nation of immigrants. Our innovation and our success have been driven by immigrant ingenuity and the ingenuity of the children of those immigrants. Our strength comes from our heritage as a place friendly to those seeking the American dream. If we ignore that heritage we simply cannot continue to retain our national strength. Positive immigration reform is the only viable path forward.


Are you a foreign national who is considering a move to the United States, but have questions about what the current political climate means for you? Are you a business owner who would like more information on the pool of foreign national business buyers? Ask us! Please contact us today and we would be happy to help.




Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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Don’t Hate Investor Visas: How Misinformation Hurts The Small Business Community

Investor Visas have been in the news, and it isn’t pretty.


They’ve been described in numerous ways, the least flattering of which is as a way for the corrupt and evil to write a check and waltz across our borders. Nothing could be further from the truth. This aspect of our immigration system might soon be facing a major rewrite – one that could effectively end the path for foreign entrepreneurs looking to come to the United States.


I own a small business and none of my employees are immigrants. Why should I care?


If you are a small business owner who doesn’t feel like they have a dog in the immigration race, it might be tempting to just tune all of the noise out. It might also be tempting to believe all of the media hype concerning our Visa system and the apparent ease with which a foreign national with terrible intentions can just buy their way into the country. Sticking your head in the sand or taking at face value everything that streams across a news feed are both enormous mistakes when it comes to the future of your business and the future of the U.S. small business economy.




The truth about investor Visas? They are a continuation of our proud national heritage. With very few exceptions, everyone who is a United States citizen can look back into their own lineage and find an immigrant who came to this country and worked hard to build a better life for their family. They created the main street businesses that kept communities strong, drove the industrial revolution and brought the prosperity that made us into a world power. In more recent generations immigrant entrepreneurs have been innovators, creating the tech-based businesses we all know and use. Cutting off the ability for the next generation of foreign born entrepreneurs to come to the United States will kill the vital legacy that made us great in the first place. Eliminating foreign born entrepreneurs also removes from the pool a large number of future business buyers – buyers today’s business owners will need when the time comes to sell.  


What about immigrants who just buy their way into the country? How do we know they aren’t “bad actors”?


Investor Visas used by foreign entrepreneurs come with an enormous amount of vetting and red tape. There are applications that require an immigration attorney’s help, one-on-one interviews at American consulates, seemingly limitless disqualifiers that can end the process for a foreign investor before it even begins. In most cases you have to have a large amount of capital to invest and your status within the United States could remain in perpetual limbo as you must reapply for some investor Visas every few years. In some cases you also have to prove that you are creating specific numbers of jobs for U.S. citizens. This wouldn’t be an easy or sensible road for any “bad actors” to take, especially considering that a tourist/business visitor Visa (of which this country issued 1,106,723 in 2016) is so much easier to obtain.


Investor Visas are a good thing. They bring us the people we want and need – driven entrepreneurs and innovators. Small business owners who want the small business economy to continue to thrive should encourage, not resent, the investor Visa process.


Have questions about the process by which foreign-born entrepreneurs can buy a business in the United States? Want to know if your business would be open to this pool of buyers? Contact us today.




Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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Small Business And Immigration: Why Business Owners And Foreign Investors Should Be Paying Attention

Immigration. Walls. Visas. Bans.


The news cycle in the last few months has been awash with immigration upheaval, so much so that many people have started to tune it out.


If you are a business owner, especially one that is considering selling sometime in the near future, you really need to be paying attention to what’s going on in the world of immigration. The negative perception recent immigration changes created may end up having a dramatic effect on your business and your ability to successfully sell.


If you are a foreign investor who is considering a move to the United States, you should also be paying attention because immigration issues and changes could potentially slow down those plans.


Take the two on-hold travel and refugee bans. These bans not only stopped people from the seven and then six Muslim-majority nations from entering the United States, it made a dramatic and symbolic declaration about where America as a whole stands on issues of religious acceptance – whether that was the intention or not. In the wake of the travel ban there was a wave of canceled trips to the United States that affected the tourism industry (and the small businesses that industry supports) in a big way. Many foreign tourists canceled their trips to the U.S. because the bans created a perception that they might be stopped at the border or might face intolerance while here.


The second big piece of news was the new guidelines that will affect the H-1B Visa. While this Visa isn’t typically used by small businesses, the ripple effect of changes to this Visa program are being felt across the small business world. Like the travel ban, scaling back the recruitment of specialized foreign labor, especially in the technology sector, has damaged the perception of the United States as a tolerant place to work.


Visas were also in the news because of the Kushner family and their pitch to Chinese investors about the EB-5 as a pathway to citizenship in the United States.


The EB-5 program is much smaller than it’s more well known H-1B counterpart, and is vastly different in both purpose and requirements – but the reporting on both have cast the entire Visa system in a very negative light. The EB-5 is an investor Visa, meaning those who qualify have the intention of investing a substantial amount (think upwards of $500,000) in a business within the United States that will create jobs for American citizens – and the investor is granted a Visa for themselves and their immediate family (spouses and children) in return. EB-5 Visas are good for the economy in general and have long been used to fund major building projects that would in turn help small businesses in the surrounding areas. Losing or major restriction of the EB-5 would likely cause big problems for new building projects that boost the local small business economy.


Another major Visa program that touches the small business world is the E2 Visa. Like the EB-5, the E2 is an investor Visa – although it requires less capital. The E2 is typically used when foreign entrepreneurs want to buy a small business and use that ownership as a means to immigrate to the United States.


Although the E2 hasn’t caught the attention of the media or the current presidential administration, it would be worth paying attention if your business would help a foreign investor qualify for the E2 (pre-qualifying your business opens your pool of potential buyers to international buyers – a smart move). Changes to the E2 could result in fewer foreign investors coming to the U.S., which would be bad for small business sellers and foreign investors alike.


What’s a business owner to do? If you are considering selling your business, you might want to keep an eye on immigration policy changes, especially if your business is one that would qualify for the E2. If you are a foreign investor, don’t panic. If you’ve been keeping tabs on our immigration news cycle then you know that every potential change to the immigration system has been met swiftly and intensely with legal maneuvering, push-back and protest. The United States is a country made up of immigrant entrepreneurs and the descendants of those immigrant entrepreneurs. Massive change has little chance of long term survival because those changes are proving to be highly unpopular.


Have more questions about the link between small businesses and immigration? Contact us or visit for more.




Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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How Investment Can Result In A Green Card

By Guest Contributor Sabine Weyergraf –


Green Card sign with sky background


The goal for most immigrants is gaining permanent residency with a Green Card. If that is the case for you, the question is how to achieve this goal?

The most common answer is, by marriage. Marriage to a U.S. Citizen is certainly an option, as long as it is a real marriage. However, for a married couple who want to jointly immigrate to the United States, this is not an option. You might want to explore the alternatives. Generally, the alternatives are two non-immigrant visas, an L-1 Intercompany Transfer Visa or an E-2 Investor Visa, or the “purchase” of a green card by making the significant investment of $500,000 to $1 million in a company.

The L-1 Intercompany Transfer Visa permits the transfer of a Manager, which can certainly be the owner, of an overseas company to a subsidiary or affiliate in the United States. The requirements are: a) the transferred employee has been in a manager or executive position in the overseas company for at least one year, b) the U.S. company is a subsidiary or affiliate of the overseas company, and c) the U.S. company is a large enough operation that it will need to hire U.S. workers.

The overseas company and its U.S. affiliate or subsidiary do not have to be engaged in the same business activity and there is not a requirement for a set amount of money that must be invested.
However, the overseas company has to remain operational during the entire visa validity.
The L-1 visa for a start-up company will be issued for one year with the option of renewal for three years and then another three years. The renewal of an L-1 visa requires a significant number of employees.

For people who do not operate an overseas business or would like to receive more than an initial one year visa approval, the E-2 Investor Visa is a viable option. In general the E-2 Visa requires an investment of around $100,000 into the establishment of an U.S. company.

In order to apply for an E-2 Visa, the U.S. business investment needs to have already taken place. That means, either the purchase contract for an existing business with the purchase price in escrow or establishing your own start-up business. In the event you choose to purchase an existing business, it is important that the business already has employees. If a new business is established, the investor must show that the business has the potential to need U.S. workers and that the investor has already begun to look for qualified employees.

As previously said, the L-1 and E-2 are temporary non-immigrant visas. Then what is the process that moves you from temporary to permanent status.

If your U.S. company (affiliate or subsidiary) becomes well established, meaning it is profitable and providing employment for U.S. workers and your overseas company is also still operating, you can apply for a Multinational Manager Green Card. Your ability to apply is based on the fact that you are managing two companies in two different countries which both have employees.

For the Multinational Manager Green Card, it does not matter if you are in L-1 or E-2 status, it only matters that you are managing two different companies in two different countries, you worked for the overseas company for at least one year before coming to the United States and both companies have employees. The L-1 visa is not a necessity to receive a Multinational Manager Green Card.

However, if you closed your business overseas, you cannot apply for a Multinational Manager Green Card.

If you do not want to first apply for an L-1 or E-2 and prefer to go straight for the permanent residency, then you can “purchase” a green card. This is the Eb-5 program. This requires the investment of $500,000 to $1 Million either in the establishment of your own U.S. company or the investment in a Regional Center. $500,000 is sufficient if you invest in a designated rural or high unemployment area; investing in any other location will require an investment of $1 Million.

A Regional Center is basically an administration company that collects money from foreign investors and then invests it in designated projects, such as the build out of an airport, a solar field, housing or farms.

If you would like to invest in your own company, then you will need 1 Million Dollars readily available as the investment must be made in full. Income or expenses of an existing U.S. business cannot be used to prove the investment of 1 Million Dollars. After this investment is done, you receive a conditional residency for two years. Within these two years either your project at the regional center or your own company has to create ten full-time jobs. If you can show these jobs, then you will receive your permanent residency.




Sabine Weyergraf is founding partner and New York licensed attorney practicing solely immigration law with
Weyergraf Immigration, PA in Sarasota, Florida.
Contact: 941-706-4102,

This article is provided for general informational purposes and does not constitute legal advice.



Michael Monnot

12995 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 249
Fort Myers, FL 33907

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Buying a Business in the United States: The E-2 Visa

If you are living abroad and are looking for a way to come to the United States, then perhaps the E-2 Visa is for you.


What is an E-2 Visa?


This is a nonimmigrant investment Visa that allows a business buyer (and their spouse and children) to come to live and work in the U.S. so long as they invest in a business that has been approved as qualified for an E-2 Visa.


You can find out more about this type of Visa from the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website here:


How much will I need to purchase an E-2 qualified business?


The answer is, it depends. In most cases you will need somewhere around $80,000 to $120,000 to invest in a business to qualify for the Visa, but there are exceptions to this guideline.


How do I find a business that will help me qualify for the E-2 Visa?


Talk to a business broker who has experience with the immigration process and they should be able to answer any questions you have and help you to find a business that will qualify for the E-2 Visa. We have affiliations with local immigration attorneys and have helped many foreign nationals with the purchase of a business in the United States.


Is the E-2 Visa permanent?


No, but as long as you are meeting the requirements for the Visa you can be granted unlimited five year or two year extensions. An example of a situation where you would no longer be meeting those requirements would be if you sold the business you used to obtain your E-2 Visa without previously purchasing another business that would also qualify.


What if I am looking for permanent immigration status?


Those looking for permanent status would need to qualify for a different kind of investor Visa, the EB-5 Investor Green Card. You can read more about this type of Visa here:


Buying a Business in the United States: The EB-5 Visa


What if I have more questions?


Ask us! Please feel free to leave us a comment or question below, or you can read more about using a business investment to come to the United State on our website here:




Michael Monnot


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Buying a Business in the United States: The EB-5 Visa

If you are living abroad and are looking for a way to permanently immigrate to the United States, then perhaps the EB-5 Visa is for you.


What is an EB-5 Visa?


An EB-5 Visa is for investors who have invested a substantial amount in a new business venture in the United States that allows for a certain number of U.S. jobs to be created. This is a Visa that allows for permanent immigration status for the investor, along with their spouse and unmarried children.


What qualifies as a substantial amount?


The answer is it depends on the circumstances. In some cases, the amount invested for this type of Visa could be as little as $500,000.


You can find out more about this type of Visa from the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website here:


How do I start the EB-5 process?


Talk to a business broker who has experience with the investor immigration process, and they will be able to answer any questions you may have about the EB-5 Visa process, as well as referring you to a qualified immigration attorney. We have helped many foreign national investors come to the United States, and have relationships with local immigration attorneys.


What if I don’t have $500,000 to invest?


There is another type of Visa, the E-2 Visa, that allows foreign national investors to come to the United States for a typical investment of between $80,000 to $120,000. This Visa does not grant you permanent status, but you are allowed unlimited five year or two year extensions.


You can read more about the E-2 Visa here:


Buying a Business in the United States: The E-2 Visa


What if I have more questions?


Ask us! Please feel free to leave us a comment or question below, or you can read more about using a business investment to come to the United State on our website here:





Michael Monnot



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Have Your Overlooked the Possibility for a Great Deal? What the E2 Visa Can Do for Your U.S.Based Business

As a small business owner in the United States, you have likely never thought about the Visa process and how that process brings new entrepreneurs into the country who are looking to have their own version of the American dream. If you are a small business owner who is looking to sell, however, the Visa process can mean good things for your business.


Those looking to come to the United States have several avenues to choose from, but the one that impacts the small business community is the E2 Visa. This Visa allows those with enough capital to come to the United States if they purchase and run a small business. You, as the seller of a U.S. based small business can benefit by getting your business E2 Visa approved. This process comes with its fair share of red tape, but by using a business brokerage like ours with a great deal of experience and all the right contacts, the process can be quite successful.


Not all business qualify for the E2 Visa, but yours might. If it does, it will open your business to a pool of international buyers who typically close transactions with all-cash or very little financing. There are very few businesses who look into E2 approval, so it could give your business great appeal if you do.


How does your business get E2 approval? There are a number of factors like how many employees you have and how they get paid, how old your business is, and what your financials look like. We have had E2 approvals on businesses that had no employees, limited financials, and even some that were new. There are other factors that may contribute as well, the Visa process tends to work on a case-by-case basis.


The only way to find out if your business will have access to this fantastic pool of buyers is to ask. Get in touch with us today, and we can look at the possibility of E2 approval for your business. Please feel free to contact us, leave us a comment or question here- and we will be happy to help you consider the E2 Visa process.

Michael Monnot


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Michael Monnot


9040 Town Center Parkway
Lakewood Ranch, FL 34202


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