Diversity Green Card Lottery Entry - Opens October 2, 2019

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The Department of State will begin accepting online registrations for the 2021 Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery Program starting Wednesday, October 2, 2019 at noon EDT. Foreign nationals who wish to enter the lottery have until Tuesday, November 5, 2019 at noon EST to file online. For Fiscal Year 2021 (10/01/2020 - 09/30/2021), 55,000 Diversity Visas will be available. Selected applicants will be able to submit their Green Card Applications starting October 1, 2020. There is no cost to register for the DV program.  Eligible applicants are encouraged to apply.

What is the Diversity Visa Lottery Program?
Administered by the Department of State, the Diversity Visa Lottery Program provides for a class of immigrants known as “diversity immigrants” from countries with historically low rates of immigration to the U.S. Selectees are chosen by the Department of State through a random computerized drawing. Applicants who are selected in the program must meet simple but strict eligibility requirements to qualify. The diversity visas are distributed among six geographic regions, and no single country may receive more than seven percent of the total available diversity visas in any one year.

Who is eligible to enter the lottery?
Requirement 1: You must be born in an eligible country. The lottery is open to natives of countries that have historically low rates of immigration to the U.S. As such, for Fiscal Year 2021, natives of the following countries are NOT eligible to apply, because more than 50,000 natives of these countries immigrated to the United States in the previous five years: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born), Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and Vietnam. Persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR, and Taiwan are eligible. Those who cannot register because their country of birth is excluded may be able to qualify through a spouse who was born in an eligible country or, in certain circumstances, through a parent's country of birth.

Requirement 2: You must meet the education/work experience requirement by having either: 1) at least a high school education or its equivalent, defined as successful completion of a 12-year course of formal elementary and secondary education; or 2) 2 years of work experience within the past 5 years in an occupation that requires at least 2 years of training or experience to perform.

How are the winners selected and notified?
The Department of State selects lottery winners through a randomized computer drawing. Results will be published during May 5, 2020 through September 30, 2021, on the official diversity visa website at dvlottery.state.gov.  Applicants must go to the Entrant Status Check using the unique confirmation number saved from their DV-2021 online entry registration to find out whether their entry has been selected in the program. The State Department does not notify selectees by letter, e-mail, fax or telephone. The official website is the only legitimate source of lottery results. Diversity Visa Lottery fraud is common. Applicants should take precautions to protect themselves. Remember that there is no fee to enter the lottery and the Department of State will not send lottery winning emails, letters, or faxes to applicants.

This article is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the immigration team at Troglia•Kaplan Attorneys.

Olivia ShanksComment