Every year the US Government conducts the USA Green Card Lottery program popularly known as Diversity Lottery (DV lottery), which, if you win, can earn you the status of lawful permanent resident of the US. It is this lucky draw that can be your ticket to permanent entry – working and living permit – in the US.
USA Green Card Lottery or Diversity Lottery (DV)
The Diversity Lottery which is conducted yearly, issues 50,000 Green Cards to immigrants by a process of random selection. Applicants need to meet certain simple but inflexible criteria of eligibility, to apply for the USA Green Card lottery. As all the countries are not allowed to apply, the initial criterion is that an individual has to belong to an eligible country, which is usually the country of his / her birth and not the one where he / she is living now. Another criterion is that an aspirant must have at least an education up to high school standard or something similar to it; or 2 years of work experience during the last 5 years.
The reason why every country is not on the eligibility list it that any country from which a huge number of migrants is moving to the US is not allowed to apply. In the Employment and Family based visa groups, if 50,000 or more people have migrated to US from a particular country during the previous five years, then that country would enter into the list of ineligible countries for the present year’s DV free lottery program.
Participating in the USA Green Card Lottery
Even if you do not belong to a country meeting the necessary requirements, you can still apply for the USA Green Card lottery if your spouse belongs to a qualifying country. If selected, the candidate and the spouse have to enter the US together. Children who are below 21 years of age and listed in the application can come with their parents to the US .
An individual who does not belong to a qualifying country can also become eligible through his/her parent(s) provided neither of them was an inhabitant of any disqualifying country when the applicant was born.
An eligible individual must submit only one application, as more than one will lead to disqualification. However, married couples can both submit one entry each if they meet the qualifying necessities for the USA Green Card lottery.
At the Kentucky Consular Center, all the received applications are numbered separately. From every geographic zone, the computer will select randomly from the correct entries, extending a fair and equal chance to all applicants of the USA Green Card lottery program. If you win, the Kentucky Consular Center will forward an appointment letter 4-6 weeks prior to your interview with the Overseas US consular officers. The chosen aspirants, when applying for the Visa, must pay all required immigrant visa fees at the US Consulate or Embassy in person.
Benefits of Winning the USA Green Card Lottery
Acquiring the Green Card through USA Green Card lottery can yield you a lot of benefits, which are:
- You will gain the right to request for government funded economic support for your education. You can avail ‘in-state’ or ‘resident’ tuition, paying much less for your college and university and thus saving 3-4 times more than foreigners.
- You will earn the permission to work anywhere in US, irrespective of hours/week, job function, etc. except for those companies that only recruit US citizens. It will provide more job prospects, as you will no longer require a sponsorship of an employer, and will be able to provide security clearance needed in a new profession.
- You will have the permit to actually start your own business and create a company. If you have worked for 40 quarters, that is for 10 years before you retire, you will be entitled to receive Social Security Benefits.
- You will be exempted from the restrictions of exporting and become suitable for government grants.
- You will be able to sponsor your partner and single children below 21 years of age to get status of permanent residence. A family Green Card will remain valid once you lose a job or pass away.
- Children of a Green Card holder, after turning 21 years of age and getting married can stay in US, unlike families with work permits, whose children have to get a student and work visa in order to study and work in the US territory.
Moreover, a Green Card holder can apply for citizenship, though it is not compulsory. Remaining a Green Card holder forever makes you eligible for most of the lawful rights of a US citizen apart from the right to vote. If your native country gives permission for dual citizenship, you can become a US citizen without giving up your present nationality as well.