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Official government Green Card (Diversity Visa) Lottery program.
       
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is the Green Card Lottery?
The USA Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, also known as "Green Card Lottery", is an immigration program run by the U.S. Department of State which makes permanent resident visas available to 50 000 applicants chosen by a computer-generated random drawing. Established by the Immigration Act of 1990, this program gives people from countries with low U.S. immigration a chance to immigrate to the United States, even if they don't have close relatives or a job offer in the U.S.
What are the benefits of holding a Green Card?
A Green Card gives the holder the legal right to Live, Work, to own a Business and Study in the United States of America permanently. It gives the right to enter and leave the country freely. You may work in the many public and private sector jobs that are available. Green Card holders also receive health, education and other benefits offered only to permanent residents. They can also sponsor relatives for a Green Card. The Green Card DOES NOT affect present citizenship.
Is there a minimum age for applicants to apply for the Diversity Visa Lottery program?
There is no minimum age to apply for the program, but the requirement of a high school education or work experience for each principal applicant at the time of application will effectively disqualify most persons who are under age 18.
Is each applicant limited to only one entry during each registration period?
Yes, the law allows only one entry by or for each person during each registration period; SUBMISSION OF MORE THAN ONE APPLICATION WILL DISQUALIFY THE PERSON FROM REGISTRATION.
However, a husband and a wife may each submit one application for registration. If either is selected, the other would be entitled to derivative status.   
Who is eligible to enter the Green Card Lottery?
You or your spouse must be a native of a country that is eligible to participate in the Diversity Visa Lottery. If you are born in a country that is not eligible, but both your parents or your spouse was born in an eligible country, you do qualify. The U.S. State Department publishes the list of countries that are eligible to participate before each year's lottery. You must have a high school diploma or equivalent, defined in the United States as successful completion of a 12-year course of elementary and secondary education, OR you must have two years of work experience within the last five years in an occupation that requires at least two years of training or experience to perform.
Which countries cannot participate in the Green Card Lottery?
Changes in eligibility this year: For DV-2019, natives of Nigeria are no longer eligible.
Almost every country in the world is in the Green Card Lottery. However, the following countries are excluded from participating in this year's Green Card Lottery:
- Bangladesh
- Brazil
- Canada
- China (mainland-born) *
- Colombia
- Dominican Republic
- Ecuador
- El Salvador
- Haiti
- India
- Jamaica
- Mexico

- Nigeria
- Pakistan
- Philippines
- Peru
- South Korea
- Vietnam
- United Kingdom and its dependent territories **

* Persons born in Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan are eligible.
** Ireland and Northern Ireland are eligible.

Important: If you were born in a country which cannot participate in the Green Card Lottery, you may still enter the lottery if your spouse or both of your parents were born in an eligible country. For example, if you were born in Canada or the United Kingdom (both ineligible countries), but your husband/wife or your parents were born in Ireland (an eligible country), you can enter the Green Card Lottery. On the application form, you should enter your spouse/parents country of birth as your "native country" and your country of birth in the "Place of Birth" field.
When do I register for the Green Card Lottery?
We accept applications all year.
However, applications for the diversity visa program (Green Card Lottery) are only accepted by the U.S. Department during a brief 30 day period usually at the end of the year. To ensure that your entry is properly completed and submitted on time we recommend that you send us your application as early as possible. Sending your entry promptly will give us enough time to contact you in case there is an error in your application, or more information is needed.
How long is a Green Card valid for?
It is valid indefinitely as long as you maintain your U.S. residence. In other words, there is no time restriction on how long you can stay in the United States.
If I get a Green Card (permanent residence in the United States), can I also get US citizenship?
You may apply for U.S. Citizenship after 5 years of continuous residence in the United States. Application for citizenship is optional.
If I am selected in the Green Card Lottery, how long time will it take before I get a Green Card?
The process takes about 6-12 months on average.
May I Qualify if I am not from an eligible country?
If a person was NOT born in an eligible country but his/her spouse was born in an eligible country, such person can claim the spouse's country of birth rather than his/her own. Also, if a person was not born in an eligible country, but neither of his/her parents was born there or resided there at the time of birth, such person may be able to claim one of the parents' countries of birth.
For example: if you were born in CANADA which is an ineligible country, but your father was born in Germany and your mother was born in France, you can claim Germany or France as your native country for the purpose of this application.
How can a married couple increase their chances of being selected?
Legally married couples have the option of submitting 2 applications:

1. On the first application, the husband is the primary applicant and the wife is listed in the "spouse" section.
2. On the second application, the wife is the primary applicant and the husband is listed in the "spouse" section.

Couples submitting 2 applications double their chances of being selected. To file a dual application as described above, both the husband and the wife must meet the application requirements. You should also include your unmarried children (if any) under 21-years of age on both applications.
What family members must I include on my entry for Green Card Lottery?
On your entry you must list your spouse,  that is husband or wife, and all unmarried children under 21 years of age. You must list your spouse even if you are currently separated from him/her. However, if you are legally divorced, you do not need to list your former spouse. You must list ALL your children who are unmarried and under the age of 21 years, whether they are your natural children, your spouse children by a previous marriage, or children you have formally adopted in accordance with the laws of your country. List all children even if they no longer reside with you.
Are signatures and photographs required for each family member, or only for the principal applicant?
Signatures are NOT required on the Electronic Diversity Visa Entry Form. Recent and individual digital photos of the applicant, his/her spouse and all children are required. Family or group photos are not accepted.
May persons who are in the U.S. apply for the program?
Yes, an applicant may be in the U.S. or in another country, and the entry may be submitted from the U.S. or from abroad.
How will winners be selected?
At the U.S. Department, all entries received from each region will be individually numbered. After the end of the registration period, a computer will randomly select entries from among all the entries received for each geographic region.
May a person already registered for an immigrant visa in another category still apply for the DV Lottery Program?
Yes, there are no restrictions to enter the Green Card Lottery.



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to get professional help to participate in and not to be disqualified from the Official U.S. Green Card Lottery program.
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