There are several types of investor visas that international citizens can apply for in order to conduct business in the state of Florida. Two of the most common visas are the E2 Investor Visa and the EB5 Employment Creator Visa. These visas allow foreign investors, their spouses, and any unmarried children under 21 to take up residence in the state of Florida.
In order to qualify for the E2 Investor Visa, you must be a citizen of a country that has a treaty of commerce and navigation with the United States. Successful applicants for the E2 Investor Visa must be willing to create and maintain a bona-fide enterprise in the state of Florida, as well as make a substantial investment in the company. This investment must be considered a “real” investment, meaning that you may be subject to partial or complete loss of your investment.
Unlike the E2 Investor Visa, the EB5 Employment Creator Visa allows you and your immediate family members to obtain green cards and permanent residency in the United States. You may apply for this visa regardless of your country’s treaty status with the United States. To obtain the E2 Investor Visa, you must invest at least $500,000 in a business located in a rural or high unemployment area, or at least $1 million if the business is not located in one of these areas.
Investing in Florida
Florida businesses are incredibly diverse, and the state’s tax environment is a large draw for both domestic and foreign investors. Additionally, Florida is very welcoming to foreign investors and corporations – total holdings by non-U.S. companies in the Sunshine State currently exceed $40 billion.
Where to invest depends largely on your strengths and business interests, as well as the Florida region that is best suited for those enterprises. For example, if you have experience in real estate you may consider that South Florida communities – especially those in the Miami area – have particularly strong real estate markets. Miami is also considered the leading center of international banking within the United States, making it a smart location to invest if you are interested in opening a stateside branch of an existing international banking corporation. For those interested in a tech-related investment, metropolitan Orlando is emerging as a major player in this market.
Florida’s low sales tax and zero income tax make it incredibly appealing to entrepreneurs and investors in many industries. Regardless of the enterprise you invest in, you will find Florida to be a welcoming state with plenty of lucrative investment opportunities for foreign investment.