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For anybody interested in relocating to Florida, particularly by way of a visa, there can be so much information available it is difficult to know where to begin. We can guide you through the process from start to finish, and are even on hand to provide assistance with settling in once your visa has been granted.
We have excellent attorneys, accountants, and consultants in place to help gather all of the documentation immigration will require. They will put together a package for you to submit to immigration and can also help you set up a corporation here in the USA as well as write a business plan to go with your application.
THE E2 VISA
The most commonly used visa for people who are looking to buy a business in Florida is the E2 Treaty Investor Visa. The steps below outline what you would need to do in order to qualify for this particular visa:
We start by getting to know more about you, your available resources, skills, experience, and work with you to set clear objectives with regard to what it is you are looking for when buying a business.
We will determine how much money you have available and how different types of financing may be of assistance in buying a business, and will then start to send you information relating to businesses that may be of interest to you.
When you have decided which businesses you would like more information on we can provide you with more details (after having you sign the appropriate non-disclosure agreement) and help you to better understand the financial and operational aspects.
We work with you to explain and review your chosen businesses in more depth, and thereafter can arrange a conference call or face to face meeting with the owners.
Once you have reached the stage where you are comfortable that you have found the right business, in terms of both your personal ambitions and your budget, we will prepare a purchase agreement for you. For a visa qualifying business we ensure that the contract includes a clause that states completion of the deal is contingent upon you being granted your visa from the U.S. Embassy.
We can put you in contact with the right person to help set up a new corporation for your business (we always recommend our clients set up a new corporation so that no debt/liabilities, should there be any attached to the existing corporation, conveys to you when purchasing the business).
We can also guide you through the process of paying your earnest money deposit. This is done at the time you sign the purchase agreement and is usually 10% of the purchase price. The deposit is placed with an independent Escrow attorney.
Once the deposit has been paid and the contract signed you will have a period of time in which to conduct ‘due diligence’. We are able to recommend experienced and fully qualified experts to assist you in this process.
Upon completion of the due diligence process, and subject of course to everything having been as stated by the seller, you will need to send the remainder of the purchase price to the Escrow attorney.
Once all funds have been received they will provide you with an escrow agreement and proof that the funds are in the account – for a visa qualifying business purchase you would include these documents in the immigration package that is submitted to the U.S. Embassy.
For visa qualifying business purchases:
We will assist you in gathering together all of the necessary documents you need from the seller of the business so that you/your immigration consultant can compile the application to submit to the Embassy.
You will need to provide your personal documents such as birth certificates for all family members, a marriage certificate, bank statements showing the transfer of money to the Escrow account, and any other documents deemed relevant to your application.
Your immigration consultant will put everything together and this will be sent to the U.S. Embassy for review. Wait times at this stage can vary depending on which Embassy you have applied to but usually between 14 to 21 days later you will receive an appointment to attend the Embassy for your visa interview.
Once your visa has been granted and you have travelled to the U.S. the closing attorney will prepare the final documents for the closing meeting.
Upon the completion of the closing you will receive copies of all documents for your records and the closing attorney will wire the seller their proceeds from the sale. You will be given all of the documentation you need for your new business and the seller will then spend the agreed period of time training you and making sure you have all of the necessary licenses etc that are needed.
The above outlines the process involved in obtaining an E2 Treaty Investor Visa but there are other visas that are available, such as the B Visa, L Visa or EB-5.
For more information on which visa may be the best for your particular situation click here.
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