Annually, the United States government issues a maximum of 55,000 green cards through a computer-generated random lottery drawing. Applications for the DV 2012 random lottery will begin to be accepted today Tuesday, October 5, 2010 through Wednesday, November 3, 2010. Paper entries will not be accepted, eligible participants may access the electronic Diversity Visa entry form (E-DV) to apply during this period.
These green cards are only available to those eligible participants from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. For DV-2012, persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR, and Taiwan are eligible. No countries have been added or removed from the previous year’s list of eligible countries..
Natives of the following countries are not eligible to apply because the countries sent a total of more than 50,000 immigrants to the U.S. in the previous five years: Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born), Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Pakistan, Philippines, Peru, Poland, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and Vietnam.
To enter the DV lottery , you must be a native of one of the eligible countries. In most cases this means the country in which you were born. However, there are two other ways you may be able to qualify. First, if you were born in a country whose natives are ineligible but your spouse was born in a country whose natives are eligible, you can claim your spouse’s country of birth provided both you and your spouse are on the selected entry, are issued visas and enter the U.S. simultaneously. Second, if you were born in a country whose natives are ineligible, but neither of your parents was born there or resided there at the time of your birth, you may claim nativity in one of your parents’ country of birth if it is a country whose natives qualify for the DV-2012 program.
You must also meet either the education or work experience requirement of the DV program. You must have either a high school education or its equivalent, defined as successful completion of a 12-year course of elementary and secondary education; OR, two years of work experience within the past five years in an occupation requiring at least two years of training or experience to perform. The U.S. Department of Labor’s O*Net OnLine database will be used to determine qualifying work experience.
If you cannot meet either of these requirements, you should NOT submit an entry to the DV program.
From May 1, 2011, DV-2012 entrants will be able to use their unique confirmation number provided at registration to check online through Entry Status Check to see if their entry was selected. Successfull entrants will receive instructions on how to apply for immigrant visas for themselves and their eligible family members. Confirmation of visa interview appointments will also be made through Entry Status Check.