The USA Visa Green Card Lottery represents the chance for a new life in America. The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, commonly known as the Green Card Lottery, makes available immigrant visas each year. The lottery randomly selects eligible applicants to migrate to the United States of America.
The Diversity Visas “are distributed among six geographic regions and no single country may receive more than seven percent of the available DVs in any one year.” This even distribution allows for a more equal opportunity for potential immigrants from these regions. If you are considering immigrating to the United States and you are from an eligible country, this could be a valuable opportunity for you. So when is the next green card lottery?
More Information About USA Visa Lottery
While the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program is a lottery, the process doesn’t end there. After applying for the lottery online, those who are selected must proceed with applying for an immigrant visa. The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs lays out the stages for applicants: first, entrants must register for the lottery. Next, they must wait to find out their status. Upon winning the Green Card Lottery, an applicant must confirm their qualifications.
Only if a lottery winner is truly eligible will their win count. Next, they must submit an immigrant visa and alien registration application. If/when a visa number becomes available for the applicant, they will proceed to the interview stage. After the interview, they will find out if their application has been accepted or rejected.
As this process makes clear, simply winning the lottery is not enough. To make the most of the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, an applicant must still put forward a complete, persuasive application. All supporting documents must be supplied to the relevant authorities at the appropriate times, all fees must be paid, and a medical exam must be completed by an authorised physician.
Furthermore, as U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services explains, the process is different for those who win the lottery while living in the U.S. with “nonimmigrant or other legal status.” Such individuals must apply instead for an adjustment of status.
To do so, they must establish that they “have been selected for a diversity visa by DOS’s lottery; have an immigrant visa immediately available at the time of filing an adjustment application (Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status); and be admissible to the United States.”
Every additional step can add to the challenges of the application process. Every immigration situation is unique and comes with its own set of potential complications.
If you are uncertain as to how to proceed with your immigration application, an immigration legal professional can help you ensure that your application is prepared accurately.
HOW to Apply for USA Visa Lottery
The steps you must take to apply for a Green Card will vary depending on your individual situation. However, here is the general application process that most applicants will go through:
- Someone usually must file an immigrant petition for you (often referred to as sponsoring or petitioning for you). In some cases, you may be eligible to file for yourself.
- After USCIS approves the immigrant petition, and there is a visa available in your category, you file either a Green Card application with USCIS or a visa application with the U.S. Department of State.
- You go to a biometrics appointment to provide fingerprints, photos, and a signature.
- You go to an interview.
- You receive a decision on your application.
- Your application starts on this platform.
Safety Procedure For USA Visa Lottery
Diversity lottery “winners” have a short period of time to file the necessary paperwork and undergo extensive screening before a visa will be issued, including multiple identity confirmations using biometrics, criminal and security background checks, cross-checks with various watch-lists, and in-person interviews.
These requirements and security procedures also apply for any family members (spouses and minor children) whom the lottery winner petitions to bring to the United States as derivatives.
An individual may be issued a visa and admitted into the United States only after passing all electronic and in-person screenings. If visa processing for a lottery winner or an eligible family member is not completed before the end of the fiscal year, the U.S. government will deny the application, and the person loses the opportunity to immigrate to the United States through that year’s diversity visa program.