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Green Card Lottery Application Guide

  • Immigration Application Guide
Download information package with instructions to access and file Green Card Lottery application forms.
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Green Card Lottery - Diversity Visa (DV) Program

How to Participate in the Official United States Green Card Lottery Program

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The Green Card Lottery is officially known as the Diversity Visa Program, or the Electronic Diversity Visa Lottery. Selected winners will receive the right to apply for an immigrant visa to establish legal permanent residency in the United States and obtain a Green Card. The first step to participate is to submit your entry online, the second step is to wait until May 1st of the following year to verify online if your entry has been selected for further processing. If your entry is selected that doesn't give you automatic right to receive a green card, you need to schedule an interview at a local U.S. consulate or embassy to apply for an immigrant visa. During the immigrant visa application the U.S. consulate will verify that you qualify and are eligible for the Diversity Visa Program. Succesful applicants will have their application aproved and receive an immigrant visa to travel to the United States to establish their permanent residency and receive a green card. There are requirements and limitations to participate in the Green Card lottery.

Application dates for the DV Green Card Lottery: The online registration for the DV Lottery will begin during the last months of the year, and the participating time usually will last for 30 days only.

The annual DV Green Card lottery gives the opportunity for foreigners to receive a Green Card to come and live in the United States. This green card lottery program has a few eligibility requirements. The lottery is computer generated and randomly select the winners for the DV (Diversity Visa) using the Application Entry System (AES) that enables entrants to electronically validate and submit entry data for the applicant and derivate relatives. Participating entrants can access AES through the official site onthe internet 24 hours a day and 7 days a week during the 30 day lottery period.

The Visas or Green Cards are distributed in six main geographic regions, and higher amount of visas are going to areas with lower rate of immigration to the United States. On each area, there isn't a single country that would receive more than seven percent of the Green Cards.  Countries that are sending more than 50,000 immigrants to the US during the last five years are not eligible to win the Green Card Lottery.

Participants will receive a 16-character alphanumeric number displayed when submitting an entry to the DV Green Card Lottery. This number is very important as it is the only way to verify if your green card lottery entry was selected or not. This number can be found on the Submission Confirmation: Entry Received page online.

FRAUD WARNING:  The DV Green Card Lottery is administered by the U.S. Department of State Kentucky Consular Center in Williamsbur, Kentucky. This center was created in the year 2000 by the U.S. Department of State. Previously the Diversity Visa Lottery was run by the National Visa Center in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. There have been several websites or individuals pretending to be official U.S. Government websites and charging a fee to process your application.  There is no charge to complete the Electronic Diversity Visa Entry Form. There have been several cases of fraud of individuals or websites sending emails notifying customers that they won the Green Card Lottery and asking them to pay a fee to process their Green Card. The Department of State does not notify winnersl. Participants have to verify if their entry was selected or not. The Entry Status Check (ESC) system starts to work on May 1st of the following year. No other organization, website or company is authorized by the Department of State to notify lottery applicants of their winning entry.

A Green Card Processing fee will only be charged to winning lottery applicants when actually applying for the Green Card at a U.S. consular office. The US consulate will charge each applicant, including accompanying relatives, a non refundable DV Lottery processing fee and immigrant visa fee.

DISCLAIMER: This website doesn't process any application for the Green Card Lottery, the entry form should be filed directly with the official DV lottery website. However we provide answer to frequently asked questions about the Green Card Lottery with helpful information and guides explaining how to participate.

DV Green Card Lottery Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Who is eligible to participate in the green card lottery?
  • Qulifying occupations or minimum education required to enter the Green Card Lottery?
  • Citizenship of what countries are eligible to participate in the Green Card Lottery?
  • Do I need to speak fluent English to win the Green Card Lottery?
  • How many people can win the green card every year?
  • How can I submit my application to participate on line in the official DV Lottery site?
  • What is the official web address for the online registration for the DV Green Card Lottery?
  • Can I submit my application to participate by mail?
  • How to check the status of my participating entry in the DV Green Card Lottery?
  • What if I win, what is the next step?
  • A green card gives me the right to live, work and study in the United States?
  • For how long will be valid my green card?
  • Can I become a U.S. Citizen eventually after having my green card for a few years?
  • If I win the Green Card Lotterry, can I bring my family with me and they will also receive a green card?

Order the DV Green Card Lottery Guide to learn how to apply and to learn the answer to frequently asked questions.

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