The Department of State issued an informative bulletin regarding the 2008 Diversity Visa Lottery Program, which is open from noon EST, Wednesday, October 4 to noon EST, Sunday, December 3.
The annual DV program allows for a maximum of 55,000 Diversity Visas to be issued each fiscal year to persons from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. This program provides permanent residency visas to people that meet a set of simple guidelines. These guidelines include (1) nativity to a country eligible for the program; and (2) proof that you have met either the education or work experience requirement of the program. You must either have a high school education or its equivalent, or 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.
A computer-generated random lottery will draw selectees for these diversity visas. These visas will be distributed among the six geographic reasons; more visas will go to regions with lower rates of immigration and no visas will be provided to countries that have sent more than 50,000 immigrants to the U.S. over the past five years.
According to the Department of State, for DV-2008, natives of the following countries are NOT eligible to apply; their countries sent more than 50,000 immigrants to the U.S. in the previous five years:
Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born), Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Russia, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and Vietnam.
Please note that people that were born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR and Taiwan are eligible for this program.
Interested applicants can either access the form for the program at www.dvlottery.state.gov.