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Do I become a US citizen if I win?

US Citizenship Is Not Automatic

No, you do not gain US citizenship if you are selected a winner in the Green Card Lottery. What you get is US permanent residence. You can request US citizenship after living in the United States for 5 years.

People applying to become US citizens must meet several requirements.

US citizenship checklist.

  • They must have been permanent residents for 5 years (or 3 years if married to a US citizen)
  • They must be of good moral character (no felony criminal convictions)
  • They must be of sound mind in the judgment of immigration officials
  • They must have knowledge of the US Constitution
  • They must be able to speak and understand English (unless they are elderly or disabled)

Applicants must also get a passing score on a simple citizenship test. This is a 10-question oral test and the applicant must answer 6 questions correctly to pass.

One exceptional way to become a US permanent resident is to apply to the American Diversity Visa (DV) lottery program, which allows hopeful US immigrants to apply for a drawing to become a permanent resident.