On Saturday 6 June, up to 55,000 non-US citizens were announced as the winners of one of the US most controversial visa programs.

The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, or “DV Lottery”, as it’s colloquially known, has been threatened with shut down by President Donald Trump several times over recent years, as part of his vow to end chain migration. Despite these pledges and due to a month-long delay caused by the Coronavirus pandemic, the names of the 55,000 winners have only now been randomly selected among the qualified entries. These entries and their families are now eligible to proceed to the next stage of the process.

For applicants to be eligible to immigrate they must first demonstrate that they are not likely to become a public charge. Under this regulation, the definition of the term “public charge” is broadened to encompass any individual who is likely to require “ANY Government assistance” at any time. We discuss this regulation here.

Upon all required documents being provided to USCIS, applicants will be invited to interview. On its page of instructions, the State Department warns, “You should prepare for your interview thoroughly and carefully. Failure to be fully prepared for your interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate can result in delay or denial of your visa application”. It is not uncommon for Immigrant Visa applicants to proceed without legal representation.  Proceeding absent representation can be a risky and ill-advised strategy. We discussed possible repercussions in an earlier article which can be found here.

All available diversity visas for this fiscal year, including those for family members, must be issued no later than Sept. 30, 2021. Otherwise the foreign nationals selected will lose the right to obtain a green card through the 2021 visa lottery.

At Davies Legal Immigration, we represent clients in connection with all types of family-based US immigration. We provide a comprehensive service, including clear and concise advice from the outset, a pragmatic approach and efficient working practices. We understand the importance of our cases to clients and adopt a well-reasoned, diligent approach, in order to maximize your prospects of success. Call now to speak to a licensed US immigration attorney and obtain a free, no obligation quote.