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That's what I was afraid of. The problem is that while the law only says, "substantial investment", for the E-2 visa they usually look for around $200,000 or more. This is because anything less is a weak case that could easily fail. And they will not approve a visa for a business that they think will easily fail and you would end up being out of status. The reason I ask where you plan to invest is because if you go to a big city, Las Vegas, New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Atlanta, Chicago, or like you said, big cities in Texas liks Dallas, Houston, Austin, etc., where most people want to live, the cost of living and doing business is much higher. If $50,000 is all you have and you still want to be successful, you may have to open the business in some small town in the middle of nowhere that has a very low cost of living and doing business, like maybe a small town in North or South Dakota, Utah, Nebraska, etc. This is because a $50,000 or so investment would have a much better chance of succeeding in such a location.
Usually attorneys do not take cases of E visas for less than a $200,000 investment because they do not want to risk losing the case and having an upset client because the client has to have the money already invested and at risk and if it is denied, they have to try to sell the business or something to try to recoup their investment.
Here is a link to the E-2 if you want to read more:
And here is another good link to what the consular officer looks at:
Again, you won’t find it says $200,000, but with a $50,000, I don’t think it is a high chance of success.
Since you own a business outside of the U.S. for more than 1 year and will continue to run that business, you can invest $100,000 or more in a U.S. business (doesn't have to be the same business, but must be related by ownership) and you can try for an L-1A visa. Here is a link to that, but keep in mind that both businesses have to be run and should be successful. You can't just come to the U.S. and forget about the business outside and let it die:
Again, this doesn’t have to be $100,000. You can do it for less, but with the L-1A, they like to see a good number of jobs created for U.S. workers. So probably 4 or more at the beginning. The L-1A also has the advantage of getting you a green card quickly. Here is a link:
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