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What to Know About the Diversity Visa Lottery

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Every year, the Department of State administers the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program. This program was created to encourage immigrants from multiple countries that have historically low rates of immigration to the United States to come the U.S. and plant their roots. This year, 55,000 Diversity Visas will be available, but how can you apply?

First, you have to be eligible to apply. To be eligible, you must meet two requirements:

Requirement #1

Individuals need to be born in an eligible country that applies for the Diversity Visa program. The countries that are not eligible for the Diversity Visa program are:

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.

If you were born in a country that isnt listed above, you are eligible to apply for the Diversity Visa. If you were born in a country that is listed above, there are two other ways you can qualify.

  • Was your spouse born in a country whose natives are eligible? If yes, you can claim your
    spouse’s country of birth – provided that both you and your spouse are named on the selected
    entry, are found eligible and issued diversity visas, and enter the United States simultaneously.
  • Were you born in a country whose natives are ineligible, but in which neither of your parents
    was born or legally resident at the time of your birth? If yes, you may claim the country of birth

Requirement #2

In addition to having been part of an eligible country, you also must meet the education and work experience requirements.

Each applicant must have at least a high school education or equivalent, or two years of work experience within the past five years in an occupation that requires at least two years of training.

To know if your work experience qualifies, you can go to the U.S. Department of Labor's O*Net Online database.

 

How can I apply?

You can submit an entry at dvlottery.state.gov. Please note that there are many other websites that claim you can apply at, but they are scams and dvlottery.state.gov is the only website that you can apply at.

The aregistration is only open between Wednesday October 2, 2019 and Tuesday November 5, 2019, so the time to apply is now!

You can only apply once during each registration period, and individuals with more than one entry will be disqualified.

There is no cost to submit an entry, so why not try?

 

If you have any more questions about the Diversity Visa Lottery program, or how to submit an entry, please click here. Good luck!

 

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