Diversity Visa and the U.S. Government

The Diversity Visa Lottery is a very popular immigration program in the United States because it’s so much easier to get into than other immigration programs.

Other immigration visas require applicants to already have a job arranged in America or relatives willing to put them up.

But what about people who want to immigrate, but don’t have those advantages?

This is why the Diversity Visa (also known as the Green Card Lottery) exists. The basis of the program begins in the U.S. Congress, but its governmental organization is somewhat more complicated.

U.S. Congress

The Green Card Lottery is a congressionally mandated program. This means that the U.S. Congress (The House of Representatives and the Senate) insists that it takes place.

Congress also dictates how many green cards are given out and how the selection process is to be conducted.

Winners of the Green Card Lottery are randomly selected from the original pool of applicants. No one region is to get significantly more winners than another.

Eligible countries are based on immigration numbers from the five year period prior to the lottery. Countries with high numbers of immigration to the U.S. during that time will not be eligible.

The U.S. State Department

The State Department is effectively equivalent to the foreign affairs departments of other governments.

In the U.S., the State Department is responsible for the issuance of immigration visas to foreign residents. It is also responsible for the administration of the Green Card Lottery.

The State Department runs the online application service and announces all of the relevant dates for the lottery. It also publishes the Visa Bulletin which lets people know when to apply for their visa bulletins.

Together, the Congress and the State Department operate one of the most popular and admirable immigration programs in the world.