Should I apply for the Diversity Visa while my Green Card case is pending?
Hi, I’m Jim Hacking, immigration lawyer, practicing law throughout the United States out of our office here in st. Louis, Missouri. Some of our videos we make just because people ask us a question that we think others would find interesting. Other times we make videos because people keep asking us the same question and we want to sort of put the issue to rest. And then if people ask us that question, we can just send them the video.
One of our early videos that became so popular was about B1, B2 Visitor Visas, and that’s a type of Visa, Non-Immigrant Visa that we don’t help with at our office, and so I wanted to shoot a video that would answer that question for people like how do I file a strong visit Visa case so that people would stop asking me that question.
In this video, we seem to be getting a lot of questions about people applying for the Diversity Visa. And I suppose that’s because now is the time to be applying. But in any event, people want to know if I have a spouse based marriage case, or an employment based Green Card case, should I still go ahead and apply for the Diversity Visa? And I would say that there’s no harm in it. It doesn’t cost much to apply for the Diversity Visa, you just have to file online, but at some point you might confuse them.
Generally I’m a big believer and we give people advice all the time that they should apply for an immigration benefit if they’re available. And we tell people it’s okay to file say for two work cards, one for opt and one based on the pending Green Card. But depending on where you are in the process, you might want to think twice about filing for the Diversity Visa while you have another application pending.
Now, certainly if you’re on a work Visa or a student Visa and your country eligible for the Diversity Visa, you should go ahead and apply, there’s no downside there. But when the Diversity Visa gets underway and they’re actually starting to adjust people’s status, if you have a competing Green Card application at that point, that is if you’ve been selected in the lottery and if The time has come for you to submit your Green Card application, your adjustment application, based on having been picked in the Diversity Visa. If you have this other marriage based case, I think you’re going to screw them up. You’re going to confuse them, and they’re not going to know what you want to do.
This would probably be something that if you do get selected and you want to file two competing Green Card applications, one based on marriage or employment, the other base on being selected in the Diversity Visa, you’re probably going to want to talk to an immigration lawyer to figure out what your best bet. Probably don’t have both of those going at the same time, but of course, every case is different.
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