The period to register for the annual green card lottery has begun: Registration will close at 12 PM Noon, Eastern Time, on November 5, 2019.

The Diversity Lottery Program provides a path for some foreign nationals to become permanent residents of the United States regardless of whether they have a family member or an employer willing to sponsor them. If you meet the eligibility requirements and wish to pursue permanent residence status in the United States, you should consider registration in the lottery.

If you were NOT born in one of the excluded countries listed below, we encourage you to try this. It is quick and free. We realize it is a long shot, but each year we have clients who have won. If you do decide to enter the lottery, please let your attorney know.

For DV–2021, people born in the following countries are NOT eligible to apply, because more than 50,000 natives of these countries immigrated to the United States in the previous five years: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born), Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, 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. You can use your spouse’s country of birth instead of yours.

Entries for the Diversity Visa “green card” Lottery program must be submitted electronically at between Wednesday, October 2, 2019 at 12:00 noon (Eastern U.S. time), and Tuesday, November 5, 2019 at 12:00 noon (Eastern U.S. time). Do not wait until the last week of the registration period to enter, as heavy demand may result in website delays. No late entries or paper entries will be accepted. The law allows only one entry by or for each person during each registration period. The Department of State uses sophisticated technology to detect multiple entries. Individuals with more than one entry will be disqualified.

You can apply from the US or from abroad. Winners will be notified next spring, and can then pursue an I-485 if in legal status here or consular processing if abroad. Diversity lottery instructions can be found here:

Only submit applications at: not pay money to apply or use a .com site.

Please let us know if you win – there are still important steps to be taken to get the green card.