The annual Diversity Visa Lottery also known as the Green Card Lottery is a US government program that makes 55,000 Permanent Resident cards available every year to persons from “underrepresented countries,” which have been less represented in employment and family-based preference categories in the United States of America and who meet two basic eligibility requirements. This years (2018) Green Card Lottery Program is called DV-2020 (the year successful applicants may enter the United States of America on the green card they won), and is now open to all individuals worldwide who meet two basic entry requirements. The Program makes Permanent Resident Cards available to the winners, authorizing the winners and their families to live, study and work in the United States of America as permanent residents. The Green Card Lottery program is a United States congressional-mandated program for receiving a United States Permanent Resident Card, also popularly known as a USA Green Card, due to the green color of the Permanent Resident Card.
The diversity visas are distributed among six geographic regions. More visas are given to the regions that had
lower rates of immigration. Also, if a particular country sent more than 50,000 immigrants to the U.S. within past
five years, the citizens of that country are not eligible to participate in the green card lottery. With each
geographical region, no single country may receive more than seven percent (3,500) of the available DVs in any
one fiscal year.
Currently, around 80% of the diversity visas are received by Africa and Europe.
Natives of the following countries were not eligible to apply in DV-2013 because those countries sent more than
50,000 immigrants to the U.S. in the previous five years: BANGLADESH, BRAZIL, CANADA, CHINA (mainlandborn),
COLOMBIA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC, ECUADOR, EL SALVADOR, GUATEMALA, HAITI, INDIA, JAMAICA,
MEXICO, PAKISTAN, PERU, 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.
Complete details about the eligible countries.
Qualifying Education / Work Experience and Occupations
In order to be eligible to enter in the diversity visa lottery, you must have at least a high school education
(defined as successful completion of a 12-year course of elementary and secondary education, comparable to
such high school education in the U.S.) or its equivalent or have, within the past five years, two years of work
experience in an occupation that requires at least two years’ training or experience. Only formal courses of study
meet the education requirements. Correspondence programs or equivalency certificates (such as the G.E.D.) are
As long as the course of study completed is equivalent to a U.S. high school education, it is permissible to have
your education completed in less than 12 years or more than 12 years.To see whether your occupation qualifies,
Visit Department of Labor O*Net Online Database.
Go under the section “Find Occupations”, select “Job Family” and click on the ‘Arrow’ icon to search. Within that,
for example, select “Computer and Mathematical” and click “Go”.
You will see the list of eligible occupations in that category. You can click on a particular occupation to get the complete details about that occupation.
There are many occupations listed on the DOL website. However, only certain specified occupations qualify for the
DV Program. In order to qualify for DV based on the work experience, you must have the experience (as
explained above) in an occupation that is designated as Job Zone 4 or 5, classified in a Specific Vocation
Preparation (SVP) range of 7.0 to less than 8.0 .
If you do not meet the requirements of the eligible countries and the qualifying occupations, you should not
submit an entry to the green card lottery program.
Documentary proof of education or work experience must be presented to the consular officer at the time of the
visa interview. Do not submit that at the time of entering into the green card lottery.
Person in the U.S.
As long as the person is eligible to apply for the green card lottery, he/she can apply even if he/she is already in
the U.S. on some other legal status.
Separate application for spouse
Both husband and wife can submit one entry each separately as long as each person meets the eligibility
requirements and include the other spouse in his/her entry.
No minimum age
There is no minimum age to apply for the diversity lottery program. However, because of the requirement of a
high school education or work experience for each applicant at the time of application, it will effectively disqualify
most persons who are under the age of 18 years.
In order to be eligible, you don’t need to speak or write English, you don’t need a job offer in the U.S., you don’t
need to have relatives in the U.S., you don’t need a specific amount of money.
You need to qualify as an immigrant, that is, you cannot be a criminal, cannot be mentally disturbed, must be
able to work or support yourself, and cannot be a threat to the U.S. national interest.
Already potentially immigrant in another category
As long as you are otherwise eligible to apply for the green card lottery program, you can enter into the program
even if you are already registered for an immigrant visa in another category.
Death of DV selectee
If the person who was selected in the Diversity Lottery dies, it automatically results in revocation of the DV case.
Any eligible spouse and/or children are no longer entitled to the Diversity Visa for that entry.
The Online USA Green Card Lottery Application Process:
- Check if you qualify
- Register using a valid email address
- Receive registration number and password to your account
- Log into to your account to complete/change your information
- Provide/upload photos of yourself and any co-applicant
- We will crop and resize your photos so that they meet the diversity visa lottery requirements
- We will submit your complete and error free application
- Check online, if you won your Diversity Visa Green Card
- Winners are notified by the US Government by mail, and by email from us