Each year, 50,000 United States permanent resident visas are given away to citizens of countries with low immigration rates into the U.S. through a lottery process. If, after a random selection process, you receive a permanent resident visa through the DV-2014 (Green Card) Lottery, you can live and work permanently in the United States. You can also bring your spouse and any unmarried children under the age of 21.
The United States Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs Electronic Diversity Visa Lottery is held annually. Applications are usually accepted during October. Applications should be made online.
Each year, citizens of nations with large numbers of citizens immigrating to the United States are not eligible for the Green Card Lottery. The list may change slightly each year but, for guidance, applications for the DV-2014 lottery were accepted in October 2012. Citizens of the following countries were not eligible to enter:
- CHINA (mainland-born)
- DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
- EL SALVADOR
- SOUTH KOREA
- UNITED KINGDOM and dependent territories (except Northern Ireland)
Persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR, and Taiwan are eligible.