E2 Visa Attorney – Small-business bankruptcies on the rise in San Diego, can E2 visas come to the rescue?

According to the San Diego Union Tribune, San Diego’s small businesses are heading to bankruptcy court at a higher rate than last year, and the city is among the Top 10 metropolitan areas in the country based on the number of filings.

The number of small businesses filing for bankruptcy in the San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos region was 387 in the first quarter of 2010, giving it the sixth-highest number of bankruptcies.

In the San Diego metropolitan area, the number of small businesses that filed for bankruptcy was up 12 percent, compared with the same period last year.

At the same time our office noticed an increase in E2 visa filings for foreign investors seeking to start a business in San Diego County.

The E-2 treaty investor visa is a nonimmigrant visa that allows foreign entrepreneurs from treaty nations to enter into the U.S. and carry out investment and trade activities. Investment activities include purchase of a new business. The investment must be significantly proportional to the total investment, that is, usually more than half the total value of the enterprise or, if a new business, an amount normally considered necessary to establish the business.

Aliens from Treaty countries who have made a substantial investment in the United States may qualify for E-2 Treaty Investor status. There is no set minimum level of investment, which may qualify for E-2 status, but the lower the investment the less likely one is to qualify. Therefore, the level of investment must be such that it is sufficient to justify presence of the treaty national in the United States.

Immigrants have an ever-increasing role in the creation of small businesses. Immigrant entrepreneurship is widely recognized as having a significant impact on traditional industries such as retail, ethnic restaurants and markets, and garment manufacturing. Our clients n the past few months formed restaurants, service businesses as well as technology companies. All the new companies hired American workers immediately and so far all are doing very well.

Our suggestion for any suffering business, before closing the doors, try to reach out to an E2 potential investor, there is always someone looking for opportunities in the US. Email me and I will be happy to connect you with a willing and able investor.