Someone who is self employed is defined as someone who works for themselves as a freelancer or the owner of a business rather than for an employer; someone who works for themselves. If you are interested in immigrating to the United States to do freelance or self-employed work, then you must obtain a work visa. Someone who works in the United States and is not a permanent resident or citizen must obtain a work visa.
Unfortunately, there is not a self-employed visa but there are some options! Nearly every work visa in the United States requires a sponsorship from a legal and operating US company or agency. There are some exceptions:
Many freelancer or self-employed foreign workers will use the O-1 to allow them to work in the United States. With the O-1 Visa it still requires a company to sponsor a worker but with the O-1 Visa they can contract them under a 1099. A 1099 tax form is a record that a person gave you money but does not require a full time employment. So if you have a freelance position through a US company they may be able to sponsor you through the O-1 Visa.
Find out if you are eligible for the O-1 Visa.
B-1 Business Visitor Visa
A B-1 Visitor visa allows foreign nationals to visit the United States for business matters. Freelancer or self-employed workers who work in the follow fields may conduct work while on the B-1 Visitor Visa:
- Research and design
- Growth, manufacturing, and production
Find out if you qualify for the B-2 Business Visitor Visa.
E-2 Investor Visa
The E-2 Visa is perfect for those who are looking to start their own business in the United States. This visa typically requires that you open a business that employs US permanent residents or US citizens to help the economy. So if you are an entrepreneur who wants to start their own business the E-2 Visa will be perfect for you.
Find out if you qualify for the E-2 Investor Visa.