The Department of State released a Notice containing information on applying for the 2020 Diversity Immigrant (DV-2020) Visa Program. This annual, statutorily-mandated program provides visas for immigrants from countries with historically low rates of immigration to the U.S. 50,000 immigrant visas will be made available through this program.

There is no cost to register. Applicants are selected by lottery and must meet simple but strict eligibility requirements in order to qualify. Diversity numbers are distributed among six geographic regions with no country receiving more then 7% of the available DVs. Due to the high numbers of immigrants in the past five years, natives of the following countries are ineligible: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born), Columbia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories and Vietnam. (Natives of Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR and Taiwan are eligible.)

The requirements are twofold and must both be met: a) an applicant must have been born in a qualifying country (If an applicant is native to an ineligible country, the applicant may qualify if his/her spouse is native to a qualifying country and they are both named on a selected entry and seek to enter the U.S. simultaneously; an applicant may also claim either of his/her parents’ native country if their country is eligible and the parent did not legally reside in an ineligible country at the time of the applicant’s birth) and b) an applicant must meet the education/work experience component which is completion of a high school education or its 12 year formal education equivalent OR two years of work experience in the past five years in an occupation that requires at least two years of training or experience to perform. The Department of Labor’s O*Net Online database is used to determine work experience.

Applications are submitted electronically at www.dvlottery.state.gov between noon EST on October 3, 2018 through noon EST on November 6, 2018. Late entries and paper submissions are not accepted. Only one entry may be submitted per applicant. Applications should only be submitted on this site and there is no fee. There are many sites that require a fee and are fraudulent sites so applicants are warned to ensure that they only submit their application on the government site.

Additional information, status and selection confirmation is available at www.dvlottery.state.gov.


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