DV Green Card Lottery Instructions: DV-2016
Below is a summary of the US Department of State’s DV Green Card Lottery Instructions for DV-2016, which is conducted each year to distribute US Green Cards. Registration for DV-2016 is now closed, and registration for DV-2017 will begin in the late summer or fall of 2015.
DV Green Card Lottery Electronic Registration: DV-2016
- DV Green Card Lottery applicants must submit a complete Electronic Diversity Visa Entry Form (e-DV Entry Form).
- The sole method for entry to the DV-2016 Green Card Lottery is through the electronic online process.
- During the DV Green Card Lottery registration period, which for DV-2016 is 12pm noon EDT (GMT-4), Wednesday, October 01, 2014, until 12pm noon EDT (GMT-4), Monday, November 03, 2014, applicants may access the E-DV form at the official DV Green Card Lottery site.
- DV Green Card Lottery applicants may prepare and submit their own DV entries or have someone submit a DV entry for them.
- If you use our DV Green Card Lottery Registration Service, we must receive your COMPLETE KPC DV-2016 Credit Card Form in our offices by 8pm EDT, Wednesday, October 29, 2014.
- DOS will not accept DV Green Card Lottery entries for DV-2016 after 12pm noon EDT (GMT-4), Monday, November 03, 2014.
- Applicants must meet all nativity and education/training requirements to qualify for DV-2016.
- The US Government WILL NOT notify selected DV Green Card Lottery applicants by mail or email. Rather, beginning May 1, 2015, applicants may check their DV-2016 entry status by entering a DV Green Card Lottery confirmation number at the DV Green Card Lottery Entry Status Check page. Entrant Status Check will be available until at least June 30, 2015.
- Entrant Status Check will be the sole means of informing you of your DV-2016 selection, for providing instructions to you on how to proceed with your application should you be selected, and for notifying you of your appointment for an immigrant visa interview, should you proceed to that stage. Therefore, it is absolutely essential that you retain your confirmation number.
- Failure to fully complete the DV Green Card Lottery e-DV form will disqualify a DV entry, as will multiple entries for the same individual.
- DV Green Card Lottery applicants will receive an electronic confirmation notice upon successful submission of a completed e-DV Entry Form. Print your confirmation notice and keep it in a safe place. Again, if you do not have your DV-2016 confirmation information, you will not be able to check your DV-2016 entry status.
- Do not wait until the last week of the DV-2016 registration period to enter. Heavy demand may result in delays.
Apportionment of DV Green Card Lottery Visas
The DV Green Card Lottery makes US permanent residence visas (green cards) available to individuals meeting simple but strict eligibility requirements. Applicants are chosen by a computer-generated random lottery drawing. DV visas are distributed among 6 geographic regions, with more going to regions with lower rates of immigration, and no visas for citizens of countries sending more than 50,000 immigrants to the US in the past 5 years. Within each region, no particular country may receive more than 7% of the available DV Visas in any one year.
DV Green Card Lottery Eligibility: DV-2016
To enter DV-2016, an applicant must be able to claim nativity in an eligible country (see below), AND must meet either the DV Green Card Lottery education or training requirement (see below for more information on DV education and training requirements).
Nativity for Purposes of the DV Green Card Lottery
To qualify for DV-2016, a DV Green Card Lottery applicant must be a native of an eligible country (see below). Nativity in most cases is determined by the applicant’s place of birth. However, there are two other ways to qualify:
- If the DV Green Card Lottery applicant was born in a country whose natives are ineligible for DV-2016, but his/her spouse was born in a country whose natives are eligible for DV-2016, that person can claim the spouse’s country of birth rather than his/her own country of birth, provided that both applicant and spouse are on the selected DV entry, both are issued DV visas, and both enter the US at the same time.
- If a person was born in a country whose natives are ineligible for DV-2016, but neither of his/her parents was born in that ineligible country or resided there at the time of the DV applicant’s birth, that applicant may claim nativity in one of the parents’ countries of birth if that is a country whose natives qualify for DV-2016.
Countries Ineligible for the DV Green Card Lottery DV-2016
Nationals from all countries EXCEPT the following qualify for this year’s DV Green Card Lottery, DV-2016: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland born; persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR and Taiwan are eligible), Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom and all its dependent territories (except Northern Ireland) and Vietnam. There are no changes in eligibility this year.
Education or Training Requirements for the DV Green Card Lottery
DV Green Card Lottery applicants must have either a high school education or its equivalent (defined for DV-2016 purposes as successful completion of a 12-year course of elementary or secondary education); OR 2 years of work experience within the 5 years immediately preceding DV registration in an occupation that requires at least 2 years of training or experience to perform. US Department of Labor (USDOL) definitions will apply, and the USDOL’s O*Net OnLine database will be used to determine qualifying work experience. See also list of qualifying occupations. If you do not meet these requirements, you SHOULD NOT submit a DV Green Card Lottery entry for DV-2016.
DV Green Card Lottery Entry Procedures: DV-2016
Only one DV Green Card Lottery entry may be submitted by or for each applicant during the DV-2016 registration period. A DV Green Card Lottery entry will be disqualified if:
- All required photographs are not submitted with the DV Green Card Lottery entry (photographs of the applicant, the applicant’s spouse and each of the applicant’s unmarried children under 21, including all natural children as well as all legally-adopted children and stepchildren, even if a child no longer resides with the applicant, or the applicant does not intend for a child to immigrate under the DV Green Card Lottery program; however, photographs are not required of a child who is already a US citizen or Legal Permanent Resident); or,
- A DV Green Card Lottery applicant submits more than one entry (note: entries by a DV Green Card Lottery applicant will be disqualified if more than one DV Green Card Lottery entry is received, regardless of who submitted additional entries).
Photographic Specifications (Submitting a Digital Photo/Image)
With the DV Green Card Lottery electronic entry (e-DV), an applicant must attach recent photographs of the applicant and his/her spouse and each child under 21, including all natural children as well as all legally-adopted and stepchildren, excepting a child who is already a US citizen or Legal Permanent Resident, even if a child no longer resides with the applicant or is not intended to immigrate under the DV Green Card Lottery Program. Group or family photographs will not be accepted for the DV Green Card Lottery. A separate photograph must be submitted for each family member in the DV Green Card Lottery submission.
Each DV Green Card Lottery applicant, his/her spouse, and each child will need a computer file containing his/her digital photographic image. This digital photo file must then be submitted online with the e-DV Entry Form. The image file can be produced either by taking a new digital photograph or by scanning a photographic print with a digital scanner. The image file must adhere to the compositional and technical specifications listed below. The photo validation provides additional technical advice on photograph composition, along with example of acceptable and unacceptable photographs.
If the digital images submitted with the DV Green Card Lottery entry do not conform to the following specifications, the system will automatically reject the e-DV Entry Form and notify the sender of such rejection.
Compositional Specifications for DV Green Card Lottery Photographs
- DV Green Card Lottery entrants may test their photo for suitability through the photo validator link on the e-DV site before submitting a DV-2016 entry.
- Principal DV applicant, spouse, and/or child(ren) must be directly facing the camera; the head of the person photographed should not be tilted up, down or to the side.
- The head height or facial region size (measured from the top of the head, including the hair, to the bottom of the chin) must be between 50% and 69% of the image’s total height. The eye height should be between 56% and 69% of the image’s height.
- The DV Green Card applicant photographed should be in front of a neutral, light-colored background. Dark or patterned backgrounds are not acceptable.
- Photos in which the face of the person photographed is not in focus are not acceptable.
- Photos in which the person photographed is wearing sunglasses or other items that detract from the face are not acceptable.
- Photographs of DV applicants, spouses and/or children wearing head coverings or hats are acceptable only in cases where such are necessary due to religious beliefs, and even then, may not obscure any portion of the face of the person photographed. Photos of DV applicants with tribal or other headgear not specifically religious in nature are not acceptable. Photos of military, airline or other personnel wearing hats are unacceptable as well.
DV Green Card Lottery Technical Specifications: DV-2016
New Digital Image
- The DV Green Card Lottery image must be in Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG) format.
- Minimum acceptable dimensions are 600 pixels high by 600 pixels wide. Image pixel dimensions must be in a square aspect ratio (the height must be equal to the width).
- Image must be in color (24 bits per pixel). 24-bit black and white or 8-bit images will not be accepted.
- The maximum acceptable DV Green Card Lottery image file size is 240 kilobytes (240KB).
Before a photographic print is scanned for use in the DV Green Card Lottery, it must meet the following specifications:
- The photograph to be used in the DV Green Card Lottery submission must be 2 inches by 2 inches (50mm x 50mm) square.
- A 24-bit color image is required for the DV Green Card Lottery. Black and white or grayscale photographs scanned in 24-bit color depth, monochrome images (2-bit color depth), 8-bit color or 8-bit grayscale are NOT acceptable.
The scanned photograph must also meet the following DV-2016 compositional specifications. If it meets the print size, print color and compositional specifications, then you may scan the print using the following scanner specifications:
- Scanner resolution: The photo must be scanned at a resolution of at least 300 dots per inch (dpi).
- The image must be in Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG) format.
- The maximum image file size is 240KB.
- The image resolution must be 600 by 600 pixels.
- The image must be in 24-bit color. Monochrome images (2-bit color depth), 8-bit color or 8-bit gray scale are unacceptable.
Completing the DV Green Card Lottery Entry Form: DV-2016
Failure to provide ALL of the following information will disqualify the DV Green Card Lottery applicant from DV-2016.
- FULL NAME, with the last (surname/family) name, first name, middle name. Enter name EXACTLY as listed on passport.
- DATE OF BIRTH: Day, Month, Year.
- GENDER: male or female.
- CITY or TOWN OF BIRTH
- COUNTRY OF BIRTH: the name of the country should be that currently in use for the place where applicant was born.
- COUNTRY OF ELIGIBILITY OR CHARGEABILITY FOR DV-2016: Country of eligibility will normally be the same as the country of birth. Your country of eligibility is not related to where you live. If you were born in a country that is not eligible for DV-2016, please review the instructions to see if there is another option for country of chargeability for you. If applicant is claiming nativity in a country other than his/her place of birth, this information must be submitted on the entry. That is, a DV applicant is claiming nativity through a spouse or parent, please indicate this on the DV-2016 entry. Note that failure to list correct country of birth or country of alternate chargeability may result in disqualification.
- ENTRY PHOTOGRAPH(S): see above for DV Green Card Lottery photograph specifications and requirements. Include photographs of your spouse and all of your children, if applicable.
- DV APPLICANT’S MAILING ADDRESS: in care of, address line 1, address line 2, city/town, district/ country/ province/ state, postal code/zip code, country.
- COUNTRY WHERE YOU LIVE TODAY
- TELEPHONE NUMBER (optional)
- EMAIL ADDRESS: Provide an email address to which you have direct access. You will NOT receive an official selection letter at this email address. However, if your DV-2016 entry is selected, and you respond to the notification of your selection through the Entrant Status Check, you will receive follow-up communication from the US Department of State by email notifying you that details of your immigrant via interview are available on Entrant Status Check. The US Department of State may contact you at this email address, but will never send you an email telling you that you have been selected for the DV program.
- HIGHEST LEVEL OF EDUCATION YOU HAVE ACHIEVED, AS OF TODAY: Indicate which ONE of the following represents your own highest level of educational achievement: (1) Primary school only; (2) High school, no degree; (3) High school degree; (4) Vocational school; (5) Some university courses; (6) University degree; (7) Some graduate level courses; (8) Masters degree; (9) Some doctorate level courses; or (10) Doctorate degree.
- MARITAL STATUS: Unmarried, Married, Divorced, Widowed, Legally Separated.
- NUMBER OF CHILDREN WHO ARE UNMARRIED AND UNDER 21 YEARS OF AGE AS OF TODAY: Entries must include the name, date and place of birth of the DV-2016 applicant’s spouse and all natural, living children, as well as all living legally-adopted and living stepchildren who are unmarried and under the age of 21, excepting those children who are already US citizens or legal permanent residents, even if the DV Green Card Lottery applicant is no longer married to the child’s parent, and even if the spouse or child does not currently reside with you and/or will not immigrate with you. Married children and children 21 years or older will not qualify for the diversity visa through your entry (although they can submit separate entries on their own if eligible for DV-2016). However, US law protects children from “aging out” in certain circumstances. If your electronic DV Green Card Lottery entry is made before your unmarried child turns 21, even if they turn 21 before visa issuance, they will be treated as though they are under 21 for visa processing purposes. You are not required to list a spouse or child who is already a US citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident (Green Card holder), as they will not be eligible for a DV visa. Failure to list all eligible children will result in disqualification for the visa for principal applicants and refusal of all visas in the case at the time of the visa interview.
- SPOUSE INFORMATION: Name, date of birth (day, month, year), gender, city/town of birth, country of birth, photograph. Failure to list your spouse will result in disqualification of the principal applicant and refusal of all visas in the case at the time of the DV Green Card Lottery visa interview.
- INFORMATION ON CHILDREN: Name, date of birth (day, month, year), gender, city/town of birth, country of birth, photograph.
Selection of DV Green Card Lottery Applicants
DV Green Card Lottery applicants will be selected at random by computer from among all qualified DV Green Card Lottery entries. For DV-2016, those selected will NOT be notified by mail by the Kentucky Consular Center (KCC). Rather, starting May 1, 2015, and continuing through at least June 30, 2016, applicants may begin to check the status of their entries by entering their DV-2016 confirmation number at the Department of State’s DV Green Card Lottery Entry Status Check page.
Persons not selected in DV-2016 will NOT receive any notification by mail or by email. US embassies, consulates or this office will not be able to provide a list of successful applicants.
Spouses and unmarried children under age 21 of successful DV Green Card Lottery applicants may also apply for visas to accompany or follow to join the principal DV applicant. DV-2016 visas will be issued between October 01, 2015, and September 30, 2016 (the US government’s fiscal year 2016, or FY-2016). To actually receive a visa to immigrate to the US, applicants selected in the random DV Green Card Lottery drawing must meet ALL eligibility requirements under US law.
Processing of DV Green Card Lottery entries and issuance of diversity visas to successful applicants and their eligible family members MUST occur by midnight on September 30, 2016. Under no circumstances can diversity visas be issued or adjustments approved after this date, nor can family members obtain diversity visas to follow to join the applicant in the US after this date.
List of Countries Whose Natives Qualify for DV-2016 By Region
The lists below show countries whose natives are qualified for DV-2016 within each geographic region for the DV Green Card Lottery. The determination of countries within each region is based on information provided by the Geographer of the Department of State.
USCIS identifies the countries whose natives do not qualify for the DV Green Card Lottery program according to the formula in §203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Dependent areas overseas are included within the region of the governing country.
Countries whose natives do NOT qualify for the DV Green Card Lottery program (because they are the principal source countries of family-sponsored and employment-based immigration to the US, or “high admission” countries) are noted in parentheses after each respective regional list.
AFRICA: Algeria, Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Congo Dem. Rep. of, Cote D’Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Djibouti, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Rwanda, Sao Tome & Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe. (Natives of Nigeria do not qualify for DV-2016.)
ASIA: Afghanistan, Bahrain, Bhutan, Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Hong Kong SAR, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Nepal, North Korea, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Syria, Taiwan (China, Taiwan-born only), Thailand, United Arab Emirates, Yemen.
(Natives of Bangladesh, China (mainland born), India, Pakistan, Philippines, South Korea, and Vietnam do NOT qualify for this year’s diversity program.) Natives of Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR (listed in the European Region; see below), and Taiwan do qualify.
EUROPE: Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark (includes components and dependent areas overseas), Estonia, Finland, France (includes components and dependent areas overseas), Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macau SAR, Macedonia (former Yugoslav Rep.), Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands (includes components and dependent areas overseas), Northern Ireland, Norway, Poland, Portugal (includes components and dependent areas overseas), Romania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Vatican City.
(Natives of the following European countries do not qualify for DV-2016: Great Britain, including its dependent areas (Anguilla, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Montserrat, Pitcairn, St. Helena, Turks and Caicos Islands).) Note that for purposes of the Diversity Program only, Northern Ireland is treated separately; Northern Ireland does qualify for DV-2016.
NORTH AMERICA: includes the Bahamas. (In North America, Canada and Mexico do not qualify for DV-2016.)
OCEANIA: includes Australia (includes components and dependent areas overseas), New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and all countries and islands of the South Pacific. Countries include: Australia, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia-Fed. States of, Nauru, New Zealand (includes components and dependent areas overseas), Palau, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Western Samoa.
SOUTH AMERICA, CENTRAL AMERICA, CARIBBEAN: Antigua & Barbuda, Argentina, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia, Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominica, Guatemala, Grenada, Guyana, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad & Tobago, Uruguay, Venezuela.
(In South America Brazil, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Haiti, Jamaica and Peru do not qualify for DV-2016.)
DV applicants must meet ALL eligibility requirements under US law in order to be issued visas via the DV Green Card Lottery program. Processing of DV-2016 applications and issuance of diversity visas to successful applicants and their eligible family members MUST occur by midnight September 30, 2016. Under no circumstances can Diversity Visas be issued or adjustments approved after this date. Neither may family members obtain diversity visas to follow to join the applicant in the US after this date.
Selection and Notification of DV Green Card Lottery Winners
DV-2016 applicants will be selected at random by computer from among all qualified entries. Beginning May 1, 2015, and continuing until at least June 30, 2016, DV-2016 applicants may check the status of their entries by entering their DV Green Card Lottery confirmation number at the Department of State’s DV Green Card Lottery Entry Status Check page, to find out if they have been selected for DV-2016.
Successful DV-2016 applicants will NOT be notified by mail by the Kentucky Consular Center (KCC) of their selection. Those not selected will NOT receive any notification. Also, US embassies, consulates or attorneys cannot provide a list of successful DV Green Card Lottery applicants. Spouses and unmarried children under 21 of successful DV Green Card Lottery applicants may also apply for visas to accompany or follow to join the principal applicant. DV-2016 visas will be issued between October 01, 2015 and September 30, 2016.
Successful DV Green Card Lottery entrants must complete the immigrant visa application process and meet all eligibility requirements under US law to be issued a US visa.
To actually receive a US visa through the DV Green Card Lottery, applicants must meet all eligibility requirements under US law, including any applicable special processing requirements established in response to the events of September 11, 2001. These requirements may significantly increase the level of scrutiny required and time necessary for processing of applications for natives of some countries listed in this notice, including but not limited to countries identified as state sponsors of terrorism.
Being selected as a DV Green Card Lottery winner does not automatically guarantee visa issuance, even if you are qualified, because the number of DV entries selected and registered is greater than the number of immigrant visas available. Therefore, those selected must complete and file their immigrant visa applications quickly.
Once all visas have been issued, or by midnight September 30, 2015, whichever is sooner, DV-2016 will end. Processing of DV-2016 entries and issuance of diversity visas to successful applicants and their eligible family members MUST occur by midnight on September 30, 2016. Under no circumstances can diversity visas be issued or adjustments be approved after this date, nor can family members obtain diversity visas to follow-to-join applicant in the US after this date.
Obtaining Instructions on Entering the DV-2016 DV Green Card Lottery
Information on the DV-2016 United States DV Green Card Lottery is also available in the Visa Bulletin. Applicants overseas may continue to contact the nearest US Embassy or Consulate for instructions on the DV Green Card Lottery. For further information on DV-2016, please consult our DV Green Card Lottery FAQ.
DV Green Card Lottery Notice
Although Kirberger PC requires a fee for our DV Green Card Lottery Registration Service, the US government requires no initial fee to enter the DV Green Card Lottery Program. Moreover, the US government employs no outside consultants or private services to operate the DV program. Any intermediaries or others who offer assistance to prepare DV Green Card Lottery casework for applicants do so without the authority or consent of the US government. Use of any outside intermediary or assistance to prepare a DV Green Card Lottery entry is entirely at the applicant’s discretion.
A qualified DV Green Card Lottery entry submitted electronically directly by an applicant has an equal chance of being selected as does an entry submitted through a paid intermediary. Every DV Green Card Lottery entry received during the lottery registration period will have an equal random chance of being selected within its region. However, receipt of more than one DV entry per person will disqualify the DV Green Card Lottery applicant from registration, regardless of the source of the DV Green Card Lottery entry.
Finally, Kirberger PC cannot take responsibility for government system problems that impact the DV Green Card Lottery. We encourage you to apply for DV-2016 as early as possible during the annual DV Green Card Lottery registration period to avoid system delays, which can occur during the final week of the DV registration period due to heavy volume.