Sanwar Ali: Green Card Lottery starts 2 Oct 19 despite Trump

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By Sanwar Ali

Despite Donald Trump wanting to end the Green Card Lottery it continues, with the entry period this year from 2 October 2019 Noon EDT to 5 November 2019 Noon EDT.  If you are one of the lucky few that are selected it is an easy way to gain an immigrant visa for you and your family.   55,000 diversity visas are available and additional visas are available for family members.  Please note that you should list your spouse and unmarried children under the age of twenty-one years of age in the application.

Donald Trump wanted to end the lottery scheme and use some of the visas that would become available to make more immigrant visas available under the employment based immigrant scheme.  Indians, in particular, have to wait many years for a Green Card because of the per Country limit on employment based immigrant visas.  It is very difficult to persuade Congress to agree to major immigration reform and so nothing much has changed so far.

Trump wanted to end Diversity Visa Scheme in May 2019 and earlier

In May 2019 Trump said he wanted major changes in the US nation’s “green card” system so that it would favour people with high-level skills, degrees and job offers instead of relatives of those already in the country.

“Random selection is contrary to American values and blocks out many qualified potential immigrants from around the world who have much to contribute,”

 “Under the senseless rules of the current system, we’re not able to give preference to a doctor, a researcher, a student who graduated number one from the finest colleges in the world, anybody. We’re not able to take care of it. We’re not able to make those incredible breakthroughs.”

In early 2018 the following comments were also made:

In a fact sheet titled 'ending the economic harm caused by our immigration system' the White House had the following to say.

"President Trump's framework would end the visa lottery programme and reallocate some of the visas to help reduce the backlog of high-skilled, employment-based immigrant cases,"

The White House said Trump favoured a merit-based immigration system, which attracts the best and the brightest from across the world.

Green Card Lottery Period 2 October 2019 Noon EDT to 5 November 2019 Noon EDT

It is entirely free to enter the DV-2021 Green Card Lottery.  Those that are considered “natives” of certain Countries can apply.  Natives are usually those who are born in a particular Country or are eligible because your spouse was born in a particular Country. In addition, if you were born in a Country that is ineligible and your parents were not born or resident in that Country, you can apply on the basis of one of your parents being born in an eligible Country.  

If you were born in any of the following Countries in most cases you cannot apply under DV-2021 Green Card Lottery scheme, because more than 50,000 “natives” of these countries immigrated to the United States in the last 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.

Each Green Card Lottery applicant must meet the education or work experience requirement:

You need to at least a high school (secondary school) education or its equivalent, defined as successful completion of a 12-year course of formal elementary and secondary education;


You need to have two years of work experience within the past five years in an occupation that requires at least two years of training or experience to perform. You should check the U.S. Department of Labor’s O*Net Online database to determine qualifying work experience. can help with US employment-based visas

If you would like to apply for a US work visa – including L1 visasE1 and E2 visas, B1 in lieu of H1B visas and H1B visas - can help. is a specialist visa consultancy with more than thirty years of experience dealing with visa applications. We can help with a wide range of visa applications to your country of choice. Please feel free to contact us for further details.