Spouses and the unmarried children of treaty investors and employees can also seek the right to stay in the United States while the investor or employee is also in the country. Children must be under 21-years-of age. The spouses and unmarried children need to obtain E-2 nonimmigrant status. Their status will only be granted form the same period of time granted to the treaty investor or the employee of the treaty investor.
If the family member is currently legally in the US, they can seek a change of status or an extension of E-2 dependent status – by filing a Form I-539 with the appropriate fee.
The nationality of the spouse and/or child does not have to be the same as that of the treaty investor or employee.
Spouses of E-2 approved workers can also apply for “work authorization by filing Form I-765 with the appropriate fee. “If approved, there is no specific restriction as to where the E-2 spouse may work.”
Family members need to be careful to note the length of time the investor or employee has been granted E-2 status. They must apply for any extensions just as the treaty investor or employee must also file for extensions.
In addition, if the treaty investor of employee travels abroad, then, “unless the family members are accompanying the E-2 treaty investor or employee at the time the latter seeks readmission to the United States, the new readmission period will not apply to the family members.” In other words, it’s more practical for the family member (spouse or unmarried child) to travel with the treaty investor or employee instead of staying back in the United States.