Treaty Trader (E-1) required documents


Israeli nationals are eligible for E-1 visa classification provided they meet the requirements for treaty trader status under 9 FAM 402.9. The enterprise and applicant have the burden of demonstrating that they fulfil the requirements.

Please arrange your documents as per the below instructions.  Highlight as necessary to emphasize pertinent information. Assertions made in the cover letter must be substantiated by documentary evidence.

Please submit applications in a binder, divided into sections by lettered or numbered tabs. Every file MUST include an E visa application for an employee. See the instructions for each tab below.

Cover Letter: This must be printed on company letterhead and outline the company’s qualifications for E-1 status. The letter must address all the requirements for E visa eligibility as defined by the Foreign Affairs Manual, 9 FAM 402.9.

  • The requisite treaty exists;
  • The individual and/or business possesses the nationality of the treaty country;
  • The activities constitute trade within the meaning of INA 101(a)(15)(E);
  • Such trade is substantial;
  • Such trade is principally between the United States and the treaty country;
  • The applicant, if an employee, is destined to an executive/ supervisory position or possesses skills essential to the firm’s operations in the United States; and
  • The applicant intends to depart the United States when the E-1 status terminates.

If the enterprise previously qualified for E-1 visa status, please note the date and location of the initial qualification in the cover letter.  Note any changes in the company since the initial qualification (such as size, nature, ownership etc.) in the cover letter and submit supporting documentation.

Table of Contents: Identify the documents provided and their location in the binder.

Completed Application: Form DS-156E Part I- Business Profile, and Part II -Staff.  Please complete every question and do not write “see attached” in response to any question.

Evidence that the company meets the ownership requirements:

  • For public companies: a translated copy of the Company Registrar from the Israeli Ministry of Justice, detailing the shareholders’ names and percentage of stock ownership, and a statement from a CPA stating the amount of stock that is traded on any stock exchange.
  • For privately owned companies: documentation of ownership.
  • For companies that are ultimately owned by other Israeli companies or by a consortium: documentation identifying the ultimate shareholders by nationality (Note: To the extent that a certain percentage of a company’s stock is traded on the TASE, the nationality of the shareholders of that stock may be assumed to be Israeli.)
  • For companies that have been incorporated in the U.S.: certificate/articles of incorporation, certificate of shares issued to shareholders, business license, and lease contracts.

In all cases, please submit a formal CPA letter indicating the nature of the company (branch, subsidiary, or partnership), its structure, the ownership distribution, and nationality of shareholders.

Proof of Israeli nationality: The nationality of an enterprise is determined by the nationality of its individual owners.  Documents to prove nationality may include a valid passport of the owners of the ultimate parent company.

Evidence that at least 50% of international trade is between the U.S. and Israel: A formal statement from the company’s CPA showing international imports/exports over the last year. The statement must include:

  • Which countries the company imports from
  • Which countries the company export to
  • The volume of trade with each country
  • The volume of returned goods
  • The number of transactions with each country

Evidence of substantial and continuous flow in goods/services:

  • Invoices of purchases and sales for the last year
  • Bank records
  • Bills of shipment
  • Contracts

You may also wish to submit:

  • Catalogs
  • Letters of credit
  • Correspondence indicating trading activity
  • Warehouse receipts
  • Accounts receivable and accounts payable ledgers
  • Organization and staffing charts
  • Contracts, catalogs, sales literature

Evidence of the company’s financial situation:

  • Most recent audited financial statement
  • Most recent quarterly annual report
  • Most recent U.S. tax return

The file MUST include an Employee’s visa application:

  • Completed DS-160
  • Evidence of payment of the MRV application fee (payable on the Visa Information Service website)
  • One photograph that meets the specifications
  • Form DS-156E
  • Employee’s Curriculum Vitae
  • Letter on company letterhead explaining the reasons why the employee must be in the U.S. and a description of his/her responsibilities
  • Photocopy of the bio page of the employee’s passport

Visa application for dependents: for each family member:

  • Completed DS-160
  • Evidence of payment of the MRV application fee (payable on the Visa Information Service website)
  • One photograph that meets the specifications
  • Photocopy of the bio page of the applicant’s passport
  • Evidence of relationship to the principal applicant (marriage or birth certificate)