Sunday, January 4, 2009


The congressionally mandated Diversity Immigrant Visa Program is administered on an annual basis by the Department of State and conducted under the terms of Section 203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Section 131 of the Immigration Act of 1990 (Pub. L. 101-649) amended INA 203 and provides for a class of immigrants known as "diversity immigrants." Section 203(c) of the INA provides a maximum of 55,000 Diversity Visas (DV) each fiscal year to be made available to persons from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. The annual DV program makes visas available to persons meeting the simple, but strict, eligibility requirements. A computer-generated, random lottery drawing chooses selectees for diversity visas. The visas are distributed among six geographic regions, with a greater number of visas going to regions with lower rates of immigration, and with no visas going to nationals of countries sending more than 50,000 immigrants to the U.S. over the period of the past five years. Within each region, no single country may receive more than seven percent of the available Diversity Visas in any one year.
For DV-2010, natives of the following countries1 are not eligible to apply because the countries sent a total of more than 50,000 immigrants to the U.S. in the previous five years: BRAZIL, CANADA, CHINA (mainland-born), COLOMBIA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC, ECUADOR, EL SALVADOR, GUATEMALA, HAITI, INDIA, JAMAICA, MEXICO, PAKISTAN, PHILIPPINES, PERU, POLAND, 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. For DV-2010, Russia has returned to the list of eligible countries. Kosovo has also been added to the list of eligible countries. No countries have been removed from the list of eligible countries for DV-2010. The Department of State implemented the electronic registration system beginning with DV-2005 in order to make the Diversity Visa process more efficient and secure. The Department utilizes special technology and other means to identify those who commit fraud for the purposes of illegal immigration or those who submit multiple entries. In DV-2010, for the first time, those who submit entries may check the status of entries online and determine whether their entries are selected or not selected. Successful entrants will continue to receive notification letters by mail.
1 The term "country" in this notice includes countries, economies, and other jurisdictions explicitly listed beginning on page 13.
Entries for the DV-2010 Diversity Visa lottery must be submitted electronically between noon, Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) (GMT-4), Thursday, October 2, 2008, and noon, Eastern Standard Time (EST) (GMT-5), Monday, December 1, 2008. Applicants may access the electronic Diversity
Visa entry form (E-DV) at during the registration period. Paper entries will not be accepted. Applicants are strongly encouraged not to wait until the last week of the registration period to enter. Heavy demand may result in website delays. No entries will be accepted after noon, EST, on December 1, 2008. 2
 To enter the DV lottery, you must be a native of one of the listed countries. See List Of Countries By Region Whose Natives Qualify.

 Native of a country whose natives qualify: In most cases, this means the country in which you were born. However, there are two other ways you may be able to qualify. First, if you were born in a country whose natives are ineligible but your spouse was born in a country whose natives are eligible; you can claim your spouse’s country of birth, provided both you and your spouse are on the selected entry, are issued visas, and enter the U.S. simultaneously. Second, if you were born in a country whose natives are ineligible, but neither of your parents was born there or resided there at the time of your birth, you may claim nativity in one of your parents’ country of birth, if it is a country whose natives qualify for the DV-2010 program.

 To enter the lottery, you must meet either the education or work experience requirement of the DV program.
Education or Work Experience: You must have either 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. The U.S. Department of Labor’s O*Net OnLine database will be used to determine qualifying work experience. For more information about qualifying work experience, see Frequently Asked Question #13. If you cannot meet either of these requirements, you should NOT submit an entry to the DV program.
 The Department of State will only accept completed Electronic Diversity Visa (E-DV) Entry Forms submitted electronically at during the registration period between noon, Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) (GMT-4), Thursday, October 2, 2008 and noon, Eastern Standard Time (EST) (GMT-5), Monday, December 1, 2008.
 All entries by an individual will be disqualified if more than ONE entry for that individual is received, regardless of who submitted the entry. You may prepare and submit your own entry, or have someone submit the entry for you.
A successfully registered entry will result in the display of a confirmation screen containing your name and a unique confirmation number. You may print this confirmation screen for your records using the print function of your web browser. Starting July 1, 2009, you will be able to check the status of your entry by returning to the website and entering your unique confirmation number and personal information.
 Paper entries will not be accepted.

 It is very important that all required photographs be submitted. Your entry will be disqualified if all required photographs are not submitted. Recent photographs of the following people must be submitted electronically with the Electronic Diversity Visa Entry Form:
 You
 Your spouse
 Each unmarried child under 21 years of age at the time of your electronic entry, including all natural children as well as all legally-adopted children and stepchildren, even if a child no longer resides with you or you do not intend for a child to immigrate under the DV program.
 You do not need to submit a photo for a child who is already a U.S. citizen or a Legal Permanent Resident. Group or family photographs will not be accepted; there must be a separate photograph for each family member. Failure to submit the required photographs for your spouse and each child listed will result in an incomplete entry to the E-DV system. The entry will not be accepted and must be resubmitted. Failure to enter the correct photograph of each individual in the case into the E-DV system will result in disqualification of the principal applicant and refusal of all visas in the case at the time of the visa interview.
 A digital photograph (image) of you, your spouse, and each child must be submitted on-line 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.
 Entries are subject to disqualification and visa refusal for cases in which the photographs are not recent or have been manipulated or fail to meet the specifications explained below.
Instructions for Submitting a Digital Photograph (Image) The image file must adhere to the following compositional and technical specifications and can be produced in one of the following ways: taking a new digital image or using a digital scanner to scan a photograph. Entrants may test their photos for suitability through the photo validator link on the e-DV website before submitting their entries. The photo validator provides additional technical advice on photo composition, along with examples of acceptable and unacceptable photos. Compositional Specifications: The submitted digital image must conform to the following compositional specifications or the entry will be disqualified.
 Head Position
o The person being photographed must directly face the camera.
o The head of the person should not be tilted up, down, or to the side.
o The head of the person should cover about 50% of the area of the photograph.

 Background
o The person being photographed should be taken with the person in front of a neutral, light-colored background.
o Dark or patterned backgrounds are not acceptable.
 Focus
o The photograph must be in focus.

 Decorative Items
o Photographs in which the person being photographed is wearing sunglasses or other items that detract from the face will not be accepted.

 Head Coverings and Hats
o Photos of applicants wearing head coverings or hats are only acceptable if the head covering is worn for religious beliefs; and even then, the head covering may not obscure any portion of the face of the applicant. Photographs of applicants with tribal or other headgear not specifically religious in nature will not be accepted; photographs of military, airline, or other personnel wearing hats will not be accepted.
Color photographs in 24-bit color depth are required. Photographs may be downloaded from a camera to a file in the computer, or they may be scanned to a file in the computer. If you are using a scanner, the settings must be for True Color or 24-bit color mode. Color photographs must be scanned at this setting for the requirements of the DV program. See the additional scanning requirements below.
Technical Specifications
The submitted digital photograph must conform to the following specifications or the system will automatically reject the E-DV Entry Form and notify the sender.
 Taking a New Digital Image. If a new digital image is taken, it must meet the following specifications:

 Image File Format:
The image must be in the Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG) format.

 Image File Size:
The maximum image file size is 240 kilobytes (240 KB).

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