The United States Department of State administers the Diversity Immigrant Visa (DV) Program to award green cards to qualifying individuals from countries with low immigration rates to the US. The US awards up to 55,000 visas annually through the program, all of which are awarded through random selection. In this article, we explain who’s eligible for the visa and discuss the process of acquiring a green card through the DV program.
To be considered for a green card through the DV program, you must meet specific qualifications. They include:
- Nationality: You must be a native of a country with a historically low immigration rate to the US.
- Passport: To enter the DV lottery, you are required to provide the number for a passport that is valid for international travel. You may be exempt from this requirement if you are not recognized as a citizen of any nation, have received an individual waiver, or if you are a citizen of a communist-controlled country.
- Education: You are required to have completed at least a high school education before admittance to the US through the DV program.
- Work experience: To qualify for a DV through work experience, you must have at least two years of experience in your occupation in the last five years.
The Application Process
Here are the steps for acquiring a DV:
- Entry submission
Entries to the green card lottery must be submitted electronically. The US Department of State assigns a limited period each year for the registration. After submitting your entry, you’ll receive a unique confirmation number. You’ll need this number to check your application status.
- Applicants’ selection
Applicants are randomly selected through a computer lottery system. Using your confirmation number, you can check if you were chosen for the next step through the E-DV application website.
- Submission of Required Documents
The next step in the process is to submit your immigrant visa and alien registration application (DS-260 application form). After your application is reviewed, you’ll receive further information on how to submit scanned copies of your supporting documents. Supporting documents include your birth certificate, police certificate and passport. Where applicable, you’re also required to submit military records, court or prison documents, a marriage certificate and supporting documents of a spouse and unmarried children under 21 who will accompany you to the US.
- Applicant Interview
You’ll then be invited to attend a physical interview at the US embassy or consulate in your country. If you have a spouse and unmarried children who’ll be immigrating to the US with you, they must also attend the interview. You’re required to bring the original versions of your supporting documents, two identical photographs, a copy of the DS-260 confirmation page, your appointment letter, medical examination results and visa fees.
- Approval Of Visa
The consular officer at the US embassy or consulate you interview in will inform you if your DV application is approved or denied at the end of the interview. If approved, your DV will be put on a page of your passport. You’ll also receive a sealed immigrant packet to present to customs when you get to the US, and you will be required to arrive in the US before the visa expires. After you receive your DV, you must pay an immigrant fee to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Are You Looking for a US Immigration Lawyer in Montreal?
If you’re looking to apply for a US green card through the diversity immigrant visa program, contact us at Silver Immigration. Our experienced US immigration lawyer will help you throughout your DV application process.