Your path to a better life for you and your family!

Basic Requirements

Overview of Green Card Lottery requirements.

To participate in the Green Card Lottery, you must satisfy two basic requirements: general requirements and education/work requirements.

General requirements.

To enter the lottery, an applicant must be able to claim nativity in an eligible country. Nativity, in most cases, is determined by the applicant's place of birth.

Persons from ALL COUNTRIES OF THE WORLD ARE ELIGIBLE to participate in the Green Card Lottery, EXCEPT persons born in the following countries: BANGLADESH, BRAZIL, CANADA, CHINA (including Hong Kong SAR but excluding Macau SAR and Taiwan), COLOMBIA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC, EL SALVADOR, HAITI, HONDURAS, INDIA, JAMAICA, MEXICO, NIGERIA, PAKISTAN, PHILIPPINES, SOUTH KOREA, UNITED KINGDOM and its dependent territories* (except Northern Ireland), VENEZUELA, and VIETNAM.

*The following dependent areas of the United Kingdom are not eligible to participate in the Visa Lottery: Anguilla, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Montserrat, Pitcairn, St. Helena, Turks and Caicos Islands.

You may still qualify to participate in the DV Lottery even if you were born in one of the ineligible countries listed above. There are 2 exceptions:

  • If your spouse was born in an eligible country, then you can claim your spouse's country of birth.
  • If one of your parents was born in an eligible country, then you can claim your parent's country of birth.

Education/Work requirements.

To enter, an applicant must have EITHER:

  • A high school education or its equivalent, defined in the US as successful completion of a 12-year course of elementary and secondary education, OR
  • 2 years of work experience within the past 5 years in an occupation requiring at least 2 years of training or experience to perform.

If you satisfy both basic requirements above, you are eligible to participate in the Green Card Lottery.

Note that after completing your online DV Lottery application, you will be asked to provide a photograph of yourself and all family members you include on your registration form. Additional information is available about the photo requirements.