A blog about U.S. immigration matters by Paul Szeto, a former INS attorney and an experienced immigration lawyer. We serve clients in all U.S. states and overseas countries. (All information is not legal advice and is subject to change without prior notice.)

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Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Diversity Immigrant Visa Program 2023 ("Green Card Lottery") - Opens Today!


The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program 2023 is a visa lottery program created by U.S. Congress. It is also known as the "Green Card Lottery." It is an annual program which opens to all individuals worldwide with approximately 55,000 visas available. For the fiscal year 2023, applicants must submit applications online between 10/6/2021 and 11/9/2021. 

Where to apply and what are the costs?

The lottery is free of charge! It is an official government immigration program and the U.S. Department of State supervises the program. The department has set up an official website where all applications have to be submitted. Official Application Website of the U.S. Government: www.dvlottery.state.gov.

Who can apply? 

For DV-2023, natives of the following countries are not eligible to apply because these there were more than 50,000 natives immigrated to the United States from these countries in the previous five years:

Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (including Hong Kong SAR), Colombia, Dominican
Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan,
Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent
territories, Venezuela, and Vietnam.

Despite the fact that people born in mainland China and Hong Kong are not eligible for DV-2023, those who born in Macau SAR and Taiwan are eligible to apply.

If one was not born in an eligible country, there are two other ways the person may have a chance to be a qualified applicant:

(1) If the person's spouse was born in an eligible country, then the person can claim the spouse's country of birth as his/her birth country, and apply visa lottery based on the spouse's native country.  

(2) As long as neither of the applicant's parents was born in ineligible countries, and they were not residents of the ineligible country at the time when the applicant was born, the applicant would be able to apply for DV-2023 by claiming one of his/her parents' country of birth. For example, if an applicant was born in China mainland, but her parents were born in Taiwan and they were not residents in China mainland at the time of applicant's birth, then the applicant is eligible to apply.

What are the education and work experience requirements?

An applicant must either have a high school education or its equivalent, defined as successful completion of a 12-year course of elementary and secondary education; or two years of work experience within the past five years in an occupation requiring at least two years of training or experience to perform.

When and how to submit an entry?

Entries for the DV-2023 program must be submitted electronically. Applicants may access the electronic DV Entry Form (E-DV) at www.dvlottery.state.gov during the registration period. Paper entries will not be accepted. DV-2022 registration began at 12:00 PM (noon) EST on 10/6/2021, and will continue to 12:00 PM (noon) EST 11/9/2021. 

Information Required

Principal entrants are required to provide their biographic information including their name, date of birth, city and country of birth, mailing address, country of residence, marital status, country of eligibility, spouse and children's information, highest level of education, information about their passport, etc.  They must also submit a digital photo that meets the program technical requirements.

Selection process

Lucky winners will be randomly selected by a computer system.  There is no way to improve the odds of getting selected.  As stated before, all eligible members within a family may apply individually, thus increasing the chance of winning.

How to find out the results

Beginning May 8, 2022, through September 30, 2023, applicants will be able to check the status of their DV-2023 entries online.  Visit www.dvlottery.state.gov, click on Entrant Status Check, and enter the unique confirmation number and personal information. Entrant Status Check will be the only way that applicants may check the status of their applications.  It will also provide instructions to the winners of the visa lottery how to proceed with the application process, and also notify them of their appointments for their immigrant visa interview.


The DV program has very strict technical requirements for submission. Entries not following the official instructions and requirements will be rejected and disqualified. Furthermore, DHS is technologically capable of identifying fraudulent entries, illegal entries or multiple entries. Also, do not wait until the last week of the registration period to enter. Heavy demand may result in website glitches and delays. When in doubt, don't hesitate to seek advice from a qualified immigration attorney.

(Immigration laws and policies change regularly.  If you have any questions regarding this article, please visit www.1visa1.com to schedule legal consultation.) 

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