The Department of State DV 2009 Visa Lottery

The Department of State is currently accepting online entries for the next Visa Lottery. Detailed information is available on the Department of State website at:

The Visa Lottery enables 55,000 individuals from most countries of the world an opportunity to obtain a green card provided they meet certain minimal qualifications. In addition, they must not be “excludable” from the U.S. as a result of such factors as criminal record, immigration violations, etc.

Applicants are chosen by a computer-generated random drawing after submitting a simple application and photograph via an online system established by the State Department.

For DV-2009, natives of the following countries are not eligible to apply because they 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, RUSSIA, SOUTH KOREA, UNITED KINGDOM (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and VIETNAM. Persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR and Taiwan are eligible.

A “native” is a person born in a country, or entitled to be “charged to” the country under the rules of “alternate chargeability.” Under the rules of alternate chargeability, an alien applicant born in an ineligible country may “use”

  • The country of birth of his or her spouse, if the alien applicant is married to a native of an eligible country; or

  • The country of birth of either parent, if the alien applicant was born in a country in which neither of his or her parents had established a residence at the time of the applicant’s birth.

The spouse or children (a “child” is an unmarried person under 21 years of age) of a successful Applicant will also be eligible for immigrant status, regardless of their place of birth.

If selected, Applicants will be instructed to apply for an immigrant visa at the U.S. Consulate in their country of residence. However, Applicants who are in the U.S. will, in many cases, be eligible to adjust their status through a local Immigration office.

A successful Applicant must prove that he or she has at least a high school education or its equivalent, or two years of work experience during the past five years in a job which, according to the Department of Labor’s O*Net OnLine database, requires at least two years of training or experience. An Applicant must also establish that she/he meets the usual qualitative requirements for entry to the U.S. For example, an Applicant with a criminal record may be barred.

Entries for the DV-2009 Diversity Visa lottery are now being accepted and must be submitted electronically before noon Eastern Standard Time (EST) (GMT-5) Sunday, December 2, 2007. Applicants may access the electronic Diversity Visa entry form at during the registration period. Paper entries will not be accepted. Applicants are strongly encouraged not to wait until the last week of the registration period to enter. Heavy demand may result in website delays. No entries will be accepted after noon EST on December 2, 2007.

NO FEE is required to submit an entry. We believe that anyone with access to the internet can complete the entry process without hiring an attorney or paying a fee to a third party. PAYMENT OF A FEE TO A THIRD PARTY WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCE OF BEING SELECTED. However, it may be worthwhile for some individuals who are not computer savvy to pay a small fee to have someone assist them with the process. Anyone selected in the lottery should consult with an attorney before taking any further action.

Please feel free to contact our office if you have any questions.