U.S. Permanent Residency/Green Cards Through Diversity Lottery

Each year, the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (commonly referred to as the green card lottery) gives out 55,000 new immigrant visas. Five thousand visas are reserved for beneficiaries under the Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act. The remaining 50,000 visas are allocated for persons from underrepresented countries. A country is regarded as underrepresented if less than 50,000 people from that county immigrated to the United States in the past five years.

The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program randomly picks persons from all of the applications submitted to the program. Persons are selected to receive the visa by chance, not by merit. If you are selected, you must demonstrate that you are eligible for a diversity immigrant visa.

To be eligible for a diversity immigrant visa:

  • You or your spouse must be a native of a country eligible for the diversity immigrant visa;
  • You must have a high school education or its equivalent (12-year course of elementary and secondary education); and
  • You must have two years of work experience within the last five years in a job that requires two years of training or experience to perform.

If you cannot meet these requirements, you should not submit an application for the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program.

There is no fee to apply for the diversity immigrant visa. However, if you are selected, you will have to pay all required visa fees at the time of your visa application. If you are issued a diversity immigrant visa, you will be allowed to live and work in the United States permanently.