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How to apply for the U.S. Diversity Visa or Green Card Lottery Program: A complete guide
5 min read
Updated on May 14, 2024

The United States is home to exceptional universities, a thriving job market, and an unparalleled quality of life, making it a highly sought-after destination. For those aspiring to be part of this vibrant nation, the Green Card Lottery program is a golden ticket, offering a legitimate path to immigrate and partake in the American dream.

Also known as the Diversity Visa Program, this visa is a unique opportunity for citizens from eligible countries to settle in the U.S. legally.

US country flag

This guide will explain how to apply for Green Card Lottery, providing comprehensive information on navigating this process successfully.

How to apply for the Green Card Lottery with us

Navigating the application process for the DV lottery program can seem daunting, but our user-friendly platform simplifies it. Here’s how to apply for an American Lottery Visa with us:

  • Step 1: Visit our website or the iVisa app. Fill out the application form with your contact, travel details, and education level. Then, pay the visa service fees.

  • Step 2: We’ll email you with a complete guide to help you complete the rest of the application and prepare for the next steps.

  • Step 3: Upload the required documents and submit the application.

We’ll keep you posted on the process! Remember, the full results will only be available in May 2025 if you apply for DV-2026.

You also have the option of applying directly with the US Department of State.

Registration period: Is there a deadline for Green Card Lottery applications?

Yes, the DV Lottery is timed to precision. DV-2025's application period closed on November 7, 2023, and the US government will announce the results in May 2024. The DV-2026 is open for applications from October to November 2024, and the results will be available in May 2025.

As you can see, it's a process that requires quite a bit of planning. While the U.S. government's window is limited to the official registration period, platforms like ours offer the flexibility to apply at any time, and we'll ensure your application is submitted when the gates open.

This is a significant benefit for applicants who prefer to prepare in advance and avoid last-minute rushes​​.

What’s the latest date I can apply for the Green Card Lottery?

Remember, the latest you could apply for the DV-2025 was November 7, 2023. Currently, the government website is not accepting entries, but it will open for DV-2026 applications between October and November 2024.

However, we are ready to receive your application for the next cycle​​. We’ll keep it on record and submit your form as soon as the government starts to accept new applications.

Who is eligible to apply for the Green Card Lottery?

The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program is designed for individuals from countries with historically low immigration rates to the U.S., aiming to diversify the population. The list of eligible countries can change annually.

Use our Visa Checker Tool to see if you’re from an eligible country for the next draw: select your origin country, set the United States as your destination, and click on´All´ on the next page to verify if the Diversity Visa Lottery is an option for you.

What to do if you're selected for the Diversity Visa Lottery Program

Being selected for the Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery Program is an exciting moment, but you must understand that it doesn't guarantee a visa.

After selection, applicants must follow specific steps to move forward. Firstly, check your status using the confirmation number provided. If you're selected, further actions will be outlined.

Complete a medical examination

Selected applicants must undergo a medical examination by an authorized physician before their visa interview. This includes any necessary vaccinations. The results should be submitted in a sealed envelope during your interview appointment or sent directly to the embassy. Ensuring you have these results ready for your interview is critical.

Gather photographs and all other required documents

Preparation is key when you’ve been selected for the lottery program. Collect all the necessary documents for your visa appointment, including:

  • Interview appointment confirmation: Obtain your schedule from the Electronic Diversity Visa (E-DV) website.

  • DS-260 confirmation: Print the confirmation page after completing your DS-260 application form.

  • Valid passport: It should be valid for at least six months beyond your planned entry into the United States (which should be only in 2026, so keep that in mind).

  • Photographs: Two identical color photos, adhering to passport photo standards.

  • Medical examination results: Bring these in the sealed envelope provided by the physician.

  • Proof of eligibility: Documents that prove your eligibility for the DV Program based on education (at least high school education) or work experience.

  • Reapplication permission, if applicable: Form I-212 is required for those previously deported from the United States.

  • Marital and custody documents, if applicable: Including marriage certificates, divorce decrees, and custody papers.

  • English translations: For any non-English documents.

  • Visa fees: Be prepared to pay these if you have not already done so. Keep the confirmation or receipt.

Attend the visa interview

The U.S. Embassy or Consulate will schedule your visa interview and send you the instructions. Be prepared to answer questions and present and explain all required documents during the interview as well.

Applying with us, we’ll send you a guide with detailed information about the visa requirements, what you need to bring to the interview, and frequent questions you may answer.

Watch the video below to learn more about the visa application process:

How many times can I enter the Green Card Lottery?

Technically, you can submit more than one form. However, your chances will be significantly reduced if you apply more than once because the system automatically voids all applications that are found to be duplicated.

Each eligible individual should enter the DV lottery only once per year.

Remember, all family members that are eligible can apply, increasing your household's chances. You're welcome to try again every year if not selected.

How long does it take to get a Green Card?

The journey from applying to the DV lottery to possibly immigrating to the U.S. can span about two years. It takes at least six months from the application to the results announcement. If selected, there's an additional process for the Green Card application and visa appointment at the U.S. Embassy.

However, these timelines may vary depending on the moment of application, the appointment and visa process, and other factors. It’s not a quick path!

When can I find out if I’m a winner of the Diversity Visa Lottery?

When applying with us, we’ll notify you when your status is available. Alternatively, you can check your status on the US Diversity Lottery portal using the registration number we provide by email.

What if I’m not selected for the Green Card Lottery?

The initial results are published in May 2025, but we recommend continue checking regularly. Some winners might withdraw or be deemed ineligible, opening spots for others. Remember, you can always try again next year.

Need help with your Diversity Visa Lottery application? Contact us!

Our team is here to help if you have questions about your Diversity Immigrant Visa Program or other travel document. Contact us via our online chat or WhatsApp.

  • iVisa is NOT affiliated with any government agency. This site does not provide legal advice and we are not a law firm. None of our customer service representatives are lawyers and they also do not provide legal advice. We are a private, internet-based travel and immigration consultancy provider dedicated to helping individuals travel around the world. You may apply by yourself directly on the various government websites. For government source information, please visit our product pages.
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