The Diversity Lottery Program allocates up to 55,000 new immigrant visas each year for individuals from underrepresented or low admission nations. A nation is considered underrepresented if less than 50,000 people from that nation immigrated to the U.S. in the past five years.
To be eligible for the Diversity Lottery Program, the foreign national must have either a high school diploma or its equivalent, or two years of work experience within the last five years in a job which demands two years training or experience. The foreign national or his/her spouse must be a native of a nation eligible for the Diversity Lottery Program. In some instances eligibility may be had if the applicant’s parent was born in a country eligible to participate in the lottery. The Diversity Lottery Program randomly picks 110,000 visa candidates, although only approximately 1/2 of those selected will actually get the immigrant visa. Individuals are chosen to receive the visa by chance, not by merit.
Each year, the Department of State publishes specific instructions on how to apply for the Diversity Visa, which may be found on their web site at http://dvlottery.state.gov. These instructions are typically made available in August, and the registration period usually begins in early October.
Do NOT retain the services of any organization that says they can improve your chances of being selected due to their connections or secret processing strategies. They are trying to steal your money. Applying under the lottery program is generally something you can do yourself. But if you want assistance, you should contact a qualified immigration attorney.