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The Diversity Visa Lottery Program | Win a Free Green Card!

Posted by Gutierrez Law Firm on May 8, 2013

Our nation’s immigration policy includes a variety of ways to qualify for U.S. permanent residency (green card). One of the more interesting methods is the Diversity Visa (DV) Program. The program selects eligible applicants with the assistance of an annual diversity lottery. With a green card, an immigrant can legally enter the United States, be eligible for permanent residence or eventually become a U.S. citizen.

Requirements for the Diversity Visa Lottery

The U.S. State Department’s Diversity Lottery was designed to promote immigration from geographic areas with low representation in the United States. Specifically, the lottery includes nations with less than 50,000 immigrants in the previous five years. Temporary visitors, tourists and refugees are not included in that amount.

An applicant must be able to prove that they were born in an eligible country to participate in the lottery. As it currently stands, nearly every country in the world is eligible. There are also specific circumstances under which an applicant may be deemed eligible if a parent or spouse was born in one of the designated countries. Prospective lottery participants must also meet one of the following requirements:

  • Completion of high school or equivalent level of education in the applicant’s country of origin
  • Two years of vocational experience in the previous five years in a job that required two years of experience or related training

Lottery participants must be eligible to immigrate to the United States in every other respect. Applicants can be disqualified for any of the following reasons:

  • Designated criminal offenses
  • Infectious disease
  • Previous violations of U.S. immigration law

The U.S. State Department makes it easy to be included in the Diversity Visa Program. Prospective immigrants can complete the required application form online at no cost. Applicants must also provide a recent photograph. After randomly selecting a pool of finalists, visa recipients are then drawn from the pool of applicants until the quota is attained.

Winning Applicants

The “winners” of the program will be asked to complete a visa application and pay the customary filing fee. Visa recipients are also entitled to submit applications for family members. Fraudulent companies posing as DV representatives do exist, so prospective applicants should be careful. The State Department will never contact interested parties via surface mail or email. Instead, applicants should verify their status on the official State Department Web site.

Participation in the United States’ Diversity Visa Program can be confusing. The services of an experienced immigration attorney can improve an applicant’s chances of obtaining a green card.

For expert assistance with all immigration matters, call the attorneys at the Gutierrez Law Firm at 210.225.7114.

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