Eligibility: Almost anyone!

Who can participate? 

Basically everybody. To participate, all you have to do is meet the requirements of the lottery program. This includes people, for example, who were born in a country that already has a high rate of citizens emigrating to the USA. One’s country of citizenship is not important in this process. What is most important is the country of birth, in accordance with current world political maps.

Excluded countries

green card participation excluded countries2Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born), Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, 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.

Exception: Individuals who were born in any of the above-mentioned excluded countries may apply if their spouses were born in one of the DV-2020-eligible countries, or if the individuals were born in an excluded country while parents (both not born in this excluded country) were only temporary residents of the excluded, non-eligible countries.

Other conditions

The only other requirement is a certification of completion of secondary school education (comparable to the U.S. high school diploma) or a minimum of two years’ work experience (within the past five years) in a profession which requires at least two years of training. Proof of these prerequisites are only necessary when and if a lottery participant wins a Green Card. They are not necessary when you are simply submitting the application.

Further Requirements:

  • at least a high school education, defined as successful completion of a 12-year course of formal elementary and secondary education;


  • its equivalent;


  • 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.


If you do not have the equivalent of a high school degree and are not sure if your job "requires two years of training" you may check the U.S. Department’s of State Online Database ONET by clicking here. Type in your profession and click on "Summary". In the database, your job title must be listed in "Job Zone 4".

ATTENTION: List your family members correctly

You must list your partner/spouse (if you are married) and all your children under 21 years on your application. Your spouse's children must be listed too! Photos must be provided for all family members on the application!

This does not mean that all family members have to immigrate to the U.S. After winning, the principal applicant can decide who to take along or not! However, all family members must be listed on the initial application to avoid disqualification!