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Diversity Visa Program Lottery Enrollment Now Open

8 Oct

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) opened online registration for the Fiscal Year 2023 (FY2023) Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (DV) lottery at 12:00pm Eastern on October 6. Prospective applicants will have until 12:00pm Eastern on November 9 to submit their registration through the DOS’s DV registration website. 

The DV program was created as part of the Immigration Act of 1990 with the goal of diversifying the U.S. immigrant population by providing an opportunity for foreign nationals largely from countries with low levels of U.S. immigration to obtain U.S. permanent residency. The DOS determines the eligibility of a given country’s nationals to participate in the DV program by reviewing the level of U.S. immigration from that country over the previous five years. If the level from a specific country is too high, individuals born in that country are not eligible to participate. For FY2023, the ineligible countries are Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (including Hong Kong SAR), Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, Venezuela, and Vietnam. For the remaining eligible countries, the DOS distributes DVs among six geographic regions, with no single country receiving more than 7% of available DVs in a given year. 

For FY2023, up to 55,000 foreign nationals will be able to immigrate to the United States through the program. Potential applicants must be able to show either a high school education (or its equivalent) or at least two years of work experience within the past five years in an occupation that requires at least two years of training or experience to perform. The program does not require a U.S. sponsor to participate. 

In its instructions, the DOS advises applicants not to wait until the last week of the registration period to enter “as heavy demand may result in website delays.” The DOS will not accept late entries, and the submission of more than one entry will render an applicant ineligible for a DV. The DOS will announce the results of the lottery beginning May 8, 2022. If selected, applicants must undergo an interview at a U.S. consular post. For FY2023, these interviews will begin in October 2022. The immigrant visas granted under the program must be issued by September 30, 2023. 

Individuals who do not qualify for the DV program or who are not selected in the FY2023 DV lottery can speak with a Foster attorney to analyze whether there are any alternate options to immigrate to the United States. Please visit our website to schedule a consultation.