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Set Up a US Company as a Non Resident

Starting a business, as a non-resident, in the United States can be a challenge. However, the country makes it simple to register and establish a company. If you wish to do business with Americans, you are required to communicate in English.

Read on to know how you (as a non-resident) can set up a company in the United States.

Starting a new business is an electrifying adventure, but it can be an overwhelming one as well. The complexity of opening a business in a foreign country can be daunting. With rapid changes consistently taking place in the political and economic climate in the United States, you are likely to be unsure if now is the right time to start a business. Don’t fret though! The U.S. has welcomed foreign nationals who want to get their businesses going in the country for quite some time.

If you are looking to set up a new business, or even expand your existing business to a new country, it can pose a great challenge. To succeed in your venture, you (as a non-citizen) are required to follow the necessary steps and reap the benefits of all the resources available to you.

Process for Registering a Company in the United States as a Non-Resident

The process of registering a company somewhat varies from state to state. It is primarily depending on whether you are forming a corporation or an LLC. After you have taken a decision on a business structure and a location to get started, you will need to consider the steps below:

  • Select a unique name for your LLC or C Corp
  • Get a registered agent
  • File for incorporation with the state
  • Get an EIN (Employer Identification Number)
  • Acquire a physical U.S. mailing address
  • Set up a business bank account in the U.S.

Will You Need a Visa to Open a Business in the United States?

If moving to the US is what you have in mind and you want to start or expand your business in the country, the type of visa you will require will depend on the current state of your business. You can technically start as well as own a business in the U.S. without having to be a citizen. It is lawful to manage an LLC or corporation from outside the country. However, you will not be authorized to the country without a valid work visa.

Get in touch with the U.S. Embassy in your home country or the US commercial service should you have any queries or need more information about applying for a visa. Although there are other types of business visas available in the U.S., the E-2 visa is the most popular among entrepreneurs.

Here are the three main requirements for obtaining an E-2 visa:

  • You must be a national of the country with which the united states maintains a Treaty of Friendship, Commerce, or Navigation
  • You ought to have invested or plan to invest a large amount of money (no less than $100,000) in a US corporation
  • You are required to demonstrate that you own a controlling interest in your firm (50% or more).

The E-2 visa has a validity of initial 2 years. The activities of the business will be assessed after this period. If the conditions of the visa are constantly met, the status can be extended in further 2-year stages.

An entrepreneur is likely to be qualified for a ‘Green Card through Investment’. It would allow them to become a permanent resident of the country. However, the law only applies to investors from other countries who can invest a million dollars in a new commercial venture (or a minimum of $500,000 in designated employment areas).

Company types in USA

LLC – Limited Liability Company

When you register your company as a Limited Liability Company, it is one of the finest options you can benefit from. That is because the owners are not personally liable for the losses the company faces. The regulations for an LLC depend on the state the company would be based in. The company articles need to be registered with the state. It is favorable as sole proprietors or other firms can become partners. The members do not pay taxes, which are calculated based on the profit the LLC earns.


The C-Corporation or C-Corp is considered the best when starting a medium- to large-scale business in the United States, albeit the corporation and owners will have to pay the taxes. However, it is still beneficial for expansion and further growth. Every tactical move in earning profits can help tackle the double taxes. However, the owners will still not have the burden of personal liability for the corporation’s losses as the C-Corp will have its own legal entity. There will be limited involvement from the IRS in a C-Corp.


Although non-residents cannot register their firms under S-Corp, it will prove beneficial in terms of taxes.

When you open an organization in the USA, it is going to benefit you in numerous ways. A few of them are mentioned below:

  • It is global merit to have a firm in the United States
  • A massive ready market for implementation and testing of the sale of product/service
  • The process of registering and incorporating a company is straightforward

The following are a few notes you need to consider:

  1. One does not need a Green Card to start a company in the United States.
  2. There is no need to have a physical address to open a company in the US. A registered agent can take care of it on your behalf. An authorized registered agent (with a valid US address) will be chosen by the state. Such agents will be allowed to secure your lawful documents. The same address could be used for applying for “EIN” and it could be useful when opening a bank account. All these milestones can be achieved by using a “Mail Forwarding Service Provider.”
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