As announced in our Immigration Alert posted September 18, 2017, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) announced the opening of the registration period for the 2019 Diversity Immigrant Visa Program. Registration was set to begin on Tuesday, October 3, 2017. Due to technical issues, the DOS closed the entry period that began on October 3, 2017. Entries submitted between October 3, 2017 and October 10, 2017 are not valid and have been excluded from the system; they will not count as a duplicate entry. The technical issue has now been resolved and a new full entry period will begin today, October 18, 2017, at noon EST and run through noon EST Wednesday, November 22, 2017. Only entries submitted during this period will be accepted and considered for selection in the visa lottery. Applicants are encouraged to discard any confirmation number or other documentation that may have been submitted during the period October 3-10, 2017.

The Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery Program enables foreign nationals to apply for permanent residence (sometimes referred to as a green card) in the United States without employer or family sponsorship. The DV Lottery Program selects 50,000 people annually who can then pursue an immigrant visa at a U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country or adjust their status in the United States through the Department of Homeland Security (if a foreign national is residing legally in a nonimmigrant status in the United States at the time of the application.)