Your guide to the 2025 DV lottery

The registration period for the 2025 DV Lottery opens on October 4, 2023. You can submit one entry through November 7, 2023. Find out how to apply and next steps if you win.

Updated September 28, 2023

green card and US visa

What is the DV lottery

The DV Lottery is officially called the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program. It is also known as the green card lottery. It is a yearly program that allows people to enter for a chance to win a U.S. visa. A computer selects the winners randomly. 

Winners and their immediate family members can become legal permanent residents with green cards. They can live, work, and study in the USA. After 5 years, they can apply to become U.S. citizens.

Who can apply

Participants in the 2025 diversity visa program must meet two requirements.

1. You must be a citizen of a country with low rates of immigration to the United States. 

People from the following countries cannot participate in the 2025 DV lottery:

  • Bangladesh
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • China (including Hong Kong SAR)
  • Colombia
  • Dominican Republic
  • El Salvador
  • Haiti
  • Honduras
  • India
  • Jamaica
  • Mexico
  • Nigeria
  • Pakistan
  • Philippines
  • Republic of Korea (South Korea)
  • Venezuela
  • Vietnam

Note: Natives from Macau SAR and Taiwan are eligible. You can still enter if your spouse is a native of a country with low rates of immigration. You can also claim the country of birth of your parents if they were born in a low immigration country.

2. You must have certain education and work experience. This includes a high school diploma or two years in an occupation that requires at least two years of training. Learn about the qualifying occupations.

You do not have to speak English to apply for the DV lottery.

How to apply

The registration period for the 2024 DV Lottery starts on October 4, 2023. The last day to apply is November 7, 2023.

You can submit one DV Entry Form (DS-5501) online at You do not have to pay a fee to submit the form. 

The Department of State will not accept late entries. You will be disqualified if you submit more than one entry per person. 

There are 55,000 diversity visas available for the DV-2025 program. The chance of getting a diversity visa is very low. Millions of people apply each year. 

DV lottery results

Results for the 2024-DV program were posted on May 6, 2023. You must use the entrant status check directly with the U.S. Department of State to check if you won. You will have to input your confirmation number. 

You will not receive a letter or an email telling you if you won. 

Be sure to keep a copy of your confirmation page and confirmation number.

Information for winners

Being selected for the DV Program does not guarantee you will get a green card. After winning the visa lottery, you will still have to:

Confirm your qualifications. Make sure you have a high school diploma or at least two years of work experience. Your passport also needs to be valid.

Submit Form DS-260. After submitting the form online, print the confirmation page. You will need this for your interview.

Submit supporting documents. Your interview will not be scheduled until you submit scanned copies of all required documents.

Prepare for the interview. If your spouse and children are also applying for the DV visa they must be at the interview with you.

Attend interview. An officer from your local U.S. Embassy or Consulate will ask you questions about your application and documents. At the end of the interview, the officer will tell you if your entry was approved or denied.

Once getting through these additional steps, you will receive a visa. Your DV visa will be put on your passport and you will receive a sealed immigrant packet. 

To enter the United States you will need to:

  • Pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee ($220) 
  • Travel to the U.S. before your DV visa expires
  • Present the sealed packet unopened 
  • Have required medical records on hand
There is currently a visa backlog. If you applied for the 2023 DV Program, you will need to be found eligible for the visa and adjust your status by September 30, 2023.

Warning about DV lottery scams

Be aware of fraudulent emails and letters from scammers. Remember:

  • The DV lottery is free.
  • There is no way to increase your chances of winning.
  • The only place you can enter is with the U.S. Department of State website.

If someone is requesting money or offering a way to improve your chances, it is a scam. Do not pay money for an entry or to check the status of your entry. Read more about diversity visa scams.

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