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Diversity Immigrant Visa

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New immigrants to the United States (2013–2017), in family and employment categories, by country of birth
  >100,000
  50,000–100,000
  20,000–50,000
  10,000–20,000
  5,000–10,000
  <5,000
  United States and its territories
New immigrants to the United States (2013–2017), in diversity category, by country of birth
  >10,000
  5,000–10,000
  2,000–5,000
  1,000–2,000
  500–1,000
  <500
  United States and its territories

The Diversity Immigrant Visa program, also known as the green card lottery, is a United States government lottery program for receiving a United States Permanent Resident Card. The Immigration Act of 1990 established the current and permanent Diversity Visa (DV) program.

The lottery is administered by the Department of State and conducted under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). It makes available 50,000 immigrant visas annually and aims to diversify the immigrant population in the United States, by selecting applicants from countries with low numbers of immigrants in the previous five years. As of 2017, around 20 million people apply for the lottery each year.

Many fraudulent schemes purport to increase the likelihood of winning in the lottery, but in fact the only way to apply and win is to enter one's data into the State Department's website, free of charge.

Attempts have been made to end the program since 2005. In 2017, it received widespread attention after eight people were killed in a terrorist attack by a recipient of a diversity immigrant visa.

History

Legislative and administrative history

Starting in 1986, the United States established several temporary immigrant visa programs outside of the usual immigration preferences (family members or by employment). The first program was NP-5, run from 1987–89, where a limited number of visas was issued on a first-come, first-served basis. The second program was OP-1, run through a lottery from 1989–91 and available for natives of countries with low levels of recent immigration to the United States.[1][2] The third program, AA-1, from 1992–94, was available for natives from a select group of countries that had been "adversely affected" by earlier immigration laws. Intentionally and in practice, people from Ireland and Northern Ireland benefited disproportionately from these programs. They were also known as the Donnelly, Berman and Morrison visas, respectively, after the sponsoring congressmen.[3] The Government of Ireland has actively supported the various lottery bills and similar legislation since their inception.[4]

The Donnelly visa benefited "several thousand Irish" (almost 4,000) and the Berman visa had some 500 Irish beneficiaries.[5] Under the three-year Morrison program (1992–94), by far the largest in size, those born in Ireland or Northern Ireland received a set-aside of 40% of all diversity visas, for a total of 48,000 set aside visas out of 120,000. Natives or citizens of Poland, via the sheer volume of applicants, received the second largest number of visas. The United Kingdom came in a distant third with some 6,000 visas in the Morrison program, the last in which natives of the United Kingdom or its territories (except Hong Kong and Northern Ireland) were eligible to participate.[6][7][8][9]

The Immigration Act of 1990 was passed with bipartisan support and signed by President George H. W. Bush.[10] The legislation established the current and permanent Diversity Visa (DV) program, where 55,000 immigrant visas (later reduced to 50,000) are available in an annual lottery. The lottery aims to diversify the immigrant population in the United States, by selecting applicants mostly from countries with low numbers of immigrants to the United States in the previous five years.[9] Starting in fiscal year 1999, 5,000 of the visas from the DV program are reserved for use by the NACARA program, so the number of immigrant visas available in the lottery was reduced to 50,000.[11]

The first DV lottery, for fiscal year 1995, was named DV-1.[12] For fiscal years 1996 to 1999, the name was in the format DV-YY, where YY was the last two digits of the year.[13][14][15][16] Since fiscal year 2000 the lotteries have been named in the format DV-YYYY, with the full year number.[17] The year in the name refers to the fiscal year when the immigrant visas will be given, which starts in October of the previous calendar year, and the entry period for the lottery occurs almost a year earlier. Therefore, there is a two-year difference between the lottery name and its entry period. For example, for DV-2017 (fiscal year starting in October 2016), the entry period was in 2015.[18]

Initially, the DV lottery was administered entirely by mail, and only winners were notified. The entry form moved to an online system starting in DV-2005, but still only winners were notified, by mail.[6] Starting in DV-2010, all applicants are able to verify online whether they were selected.[19] Notification of winners also by mail continued until DV-2011, but since DV-2012 it is done exclusively online.[20]

Criticism and repeal efforts

Criticism of the program has focused on instances of fraud, racism[21] and the random nature of the lottery, as well as criminal or terrorist actions perpetrated by certain lottery winners.[22][23]

In 2002, Hesham Mohamed Hadayet, an Egyptian immigrant who maintained residency in United States through his wife's diversity visa,[24] killed two people and injured four others at Los Angeles International Airport.[25][26][27] This led to criticism of the lottery as a security threat.[28][29]

Several attempts have been made to eliminate the lottery. In December 2005, the United States House of Representatives voted 273–148 to add an amendment to the border enforcement bill H.R. 4437 abolishing the DV. Opponents of the lottery said it was susceptible to fraud and was a way for terrorists to enter the country. The Senate never passed the bill. In March 2007, Congressman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) introduced H.R. 1430, which would eliminate the Diversity Visa program. In June 2007, the U.S. House passed H.R. 2764 to eliminate funding for the program, and the Senate did likewise in September.[30]

However, the final version of this bill with amendments, signed into law on December 26, 2007, did not include the removal of funds for the program. Although H.R. 2764 was an appropriation bill and could only cut funds for the lottery during one fiscal year, this was the first time that both the House and the Senate passed a bill to halt the Diversity Visa program.H.R. 2764

Rep. Goodlatte reintroduced his Security and Fairness Enhancement for America Act (formerly H.R. 1430, now H.R. 2305) on May 7, 2009. The bill would have amended the Immigration and Nationality Act to eliminate the diversity immigrant program completely, but did not pass. Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX) introduced the Save America Comprehensive Immigration Act of 2009 (H.R. 264) on January 7, 2009. The bill would have doubled the number of diversity visas available to 110,000 yearly. This bill did not pass.[31] Had it passed, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013 would have abolished the program in fiscal year 2015.[clarification needed] A comprehensive analysis of DV lottery issues was prepared in 2011 by Congressional Research Service.[32]

In 2013, the so-called "Gang of Eight" - a bi-partisan group of eight United States Senators - introduced a bill that would have comprehensively reformed the immigration system. The bill would have repealed the Diversity Immigrant Visa program.[10][33] The legislation passed the Senate, but was defeated in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives amid Republican opposition.[10]

In 2017, Sayfullo Habibullaevich Saipov, who had immigrated from Uzbekistan on a diversity visa in 2010, killed eight and injured eleven when he drove his truck down a bike path in Lower Manhattan.[34][35] In response, President Donald Trump, who had earlier called for a return to a "merit-based" immigration system,[36][37] called for an end to the program.[38][39] Following Trump's call to end the program, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, indicated that diversity visa lottery recipients lack thorough vetting, something Politifact rated as false, noting that all recipients of the visa undergo background checks, security screenings, and interviews by consular officers before arrival in the U.S.[40]

Process

Requirements

To enter the lottery, applicants must have been born in an eligible country. If selected, to qualify for the immigrant visa, they must have completed at least a high school education or at least two years of work experience in an occupation which requires at least two other years of training or experience.[18] They must also satisfy general immigration requirements, such as means of support, no criminal background, and good health.

Eligibility is determined by the applicant's country of birth, with two exceptions: the applicant may claim the spouse's country of birth instead if desired, or a parent's country of birth if neither parent was born in the applicant's country of birth and did not legally reside there when the applicant was born. The applicant's country of residence or nationality is irrelevant to the lottery.[18]

Each year, the Department of State publishes new instructions for applicants.[41]

Regions and eligible countries for the Diversity Visa lottery
Eligible Ineligible Eligible Ineligible
  
  North America
  
  Asia
  
  Latin America
  
 Oceania
  
  Europe
  United States and its territories
  
  Africa

Geographical distribution

The visas are distributed among six regions: Africa, Asia, Europe (Turkey, Cyprus and all countries in the former Soviet Union are allocated to Europe, even though some of them are geographically entirely in Asia), Latin America (Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean and South America), North America (consisting only of Canada and the Bahamas), and Oceania.[18][42][43]

Dependent territories are treated as part of their respective sovereign countries, and disputed territories are allocated as recognized by the United States. For example, Bermuda is treated as part of the United Kingdom under Europe, the Gaza Strip is considered part of Egypt under Africa, and the West Bank is considered part of Jordan under Asia. However, there are some exceptions: Northern Ireland, Hong Kong and Taiwan are treated as separate countries, and Macau is considered part of Portugal under Europe (even after its sovereignty returned to China in 1999).[18]

Each region that sent more than one sixth of the total number of immigrants to the United States in the previous five years is considered a "high-admission region" (currently Latin America and Asia), and each region that sent less than one sixth is a "low-admission region" (currently North America, Europe, Africa and Oceania). The proportion of diversity visas given to the low-admission group is set as the proportion of recent immigrants from the high-admission group (currently about 80%),[44] and vice versa. Among regions of the same group, the diversity visas are allocated proportionally to their population, excluding ineligible countries (those that sent more than 50,000 immigrants in the previous five years).[42]

Within each region, the visas are not allocated among individual countries. All applicants from the same region are selected randomly as a whole, for the number of visas allocated for that region, but with the limitation that no single country may receive more than 7% of the total diversity visas (3,500).[18]

Although only 50,000 diversity visas are available each year, the lottery selects about 100,000 applicants. The reason for the larger selection is to ensure that all 50,000 diversity visas are eventually given each year, as some applicants are expected to fail general immigration requirements or may decide to withdraw and not to continue the process. As a result, some lottery winners who have received notifications might not obtain visas.[45]

It is also possible that some visas remain available after all initially selected applicants are reviewed. In this case, additional applicants are selected later. For this reason, applicants who were not initially selected in the lottery should keep checking their status online periodically, until the end of the respective fiscal year.[46]

Ineligible countries

Those born in any territory that has sent more than 50,000 immigrants to the United States in the previous five years are not eligible to receive a diversity visa. For DV-2020 (the most recent lottery, with entry period in 2018), natives of the following nations are ineligible: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born), Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom and its dependent territories (except Northern Ireland), and Vietnam.[47]

Exemptions

The term 50,000 "immigrants" refers only to people who immigrated via the family-sponsored, employment, or immediate relatives of U.S. citizen categories, and does not include other categories such as refugees, asylum seekers, NACARA beneficiaries, or previous diversity immigrants. For this reason Cuba, Iraq, Iran, Ethiopia, Nepal, Myanmar, Guatemala, Egypt, Afghanistan, Ecuador and Honduras are not on the ineligible list as of 2018, despite sending over 50,000 immigrants in the previous five years.[48] Northern Ireland, due to lobbying by Irish Americans, has a special exemption, as does Hong Kong, with those born in either jurisdiction being eligible to enter the lottery despite both China and the United Kingdom being ineligible.

Changes

The first program was in fiscal year 1995, and the following 12 countries were ineligible from the start: Canada, China (mainland), Dominican Republic, El Salvador, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, United Kingdom and its dependent territories (except Northern Ireland and Hong Kong), and Vietnam.[49] Since then, Bangladesh, Brazil, Colombia, Haiti, Nigeria, Pakistan and Peru have been added to the ineligible list and are currently on it, Taiwan has been removed from it, and Ecuador, Guatemala, Poland and Russia have all been both on and off the ineligible list, reflecting shifting levels of immigration from these countries.

Macau was ineligible as part of China only for DV-2002, whose entry period (October 2000) was after the transfer of sovereignty of Macau from Portugal to China (December 1999) but before enactment of the Macau Policy Act (December 2000), which specified that U.S. law would treat Macau as it did before the transfer.[50]

Of the eight most populous countries in the world, all are ineligible except Indonesia. Of the next 11 most populous countries, eight are eligible, of which six are among the heaviest users of the lottery (Russia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iran and Turkey); each of these countries was assigned close to the maximum possible ~4,500 openings for DV-2018 (along with Albania, Nepal, Ukraine and Uzbekistan).[45]

Historical eligibility for the Diversity Immigrant Visa lottery, by fiscal year
Country 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
 Bangladesh Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No No No
 Brazil Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Canada No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 China No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Colombia Yes No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Dominican Republic No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Ecuador Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No No No No Yes Yes Yes
 El Salvador No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Guatemala Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
 Haiti Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 India No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Jamaica No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Mexico No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Nigeria Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No
 Pakistan Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Peru Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Philippines No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Poland Yes Yes Yes No No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
 Russia Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
 South Korea No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Taiwan No No No No No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
 United Kingdom No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
 Vietnam No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No
Others Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Statistics

Applicants (including dependents)[45][51]
Region DV-2019 DV-2018 DV-2017 DV-2016 DV-2015 DV-2014 DV-2013 DV-2012 DV-2011 DV-2010 DV-2009 DV-2008 DV-2007
Africa N/A 10,714,881 9,063,669 8,161,205 6,586,302 7,500,543 6,783,699 6,304,219 5,812,174 5,105,302 4,372,560 4,150,759 3,901,093
Asia N/A 4,445,328 3,867,613 3,516,123 2,720,578 2,384,168 1,863,169 10,102,185 7,870,896 6,175,452 6,401,172 3,506,073 2,732,805
Europe N/A 7,068,792 5,820,808 5,111,888 4,731,871 4,434,210 3,672,464 3,022,473 2,593,039 2,154,539 2,174,677 2,120,883 1,910,383
Latin America N/A 807,083 539,398 731,730 315,667 266,272 217,443 200,712 193,932 126,168 192,447 243,694 489,144
North America N/A 3,541 3,581 4,263 3,585 3,657 3,356 3,717 3,793 2,624 3,193 2,647 1,968
Oceania N/A 48,988 49,517 48,155 39,884 45,120 37,224 38,962 37,674 33,743 40,964 40,260 34,834
Total 22,425,053 23,088,613 19,344,586 17,573,364 14,397,887 14,633,970 12,577,355 19,672,268 16,511,508 13,597,828 13,185,013 10,064,316 9,070,227
Selected applicants (including dependents)[45][51]
Region DV-2019 DV-2018 DV-2017 DV-2016 DV-2015 DV-2014 DV-2013 DV-2012 DV-2011 DV-2010 DV-2009 DV-2008 DV-2007
Africa 38,247 49,392 38,500 45,034 58,000 61,943 52,080 50,000 51,004 54,003 53,979 52,824 43,999
Asia 15,619 15,997 13,499 15,002 20,002 23,270 16,045 15,002 14,999 15,001 14,002 14,142 11,929
Europe 30,006 41,706 28,500 27,011 40,000 46,588 33,088 31,001 30,999 29,803 27,921 26,149 21,938
Latin America 2,182 4,995 1,951 3,000 3,999 4,620 2,206 2,002 2,001 1,982 1,893 1,845 3,097
North America 18 15 10 16 14 23 16 15 18 18 12 17 12
Oceania 1,538 3,863 1,450 1,500 3,499 4,215 2,193 2,001 1,600 1,803 1,801 1,713 1,398
Total 87,610 115,968 83,910 91,563 125,514 140,659 105,628 100,021 100,621 102,610 99,608 96,690 82,373
Proportion of applicants who were selected
Region DV-2019 DV-2018 DV-2017 DV-2016 DV-2015 DV-2014 DV-2013 DV-2012 DV-2011 DV-2010 DV-2009 DV-2008 DV-2007
Africa N/A 0.46% 0.42% 0.55% 0.88% 0.83% 0.77% 0.79% 0.88% 1.06% 1.23% 1.27% 1.13%
Asia N/A 0.36% 0.35% 0.43% 0.74% 0.98% 0.86% 0.15% 0.19% 0.24% 0.22% 0.40% 0.44%
Europe N/A 0.59% 0.49% 0.53% 0.85% 1.05% 0.90% 1.03% 1.20% 1.38% 1.28% 1.23% 1.15%
Latin America N/A 0.62% 0.36% 0.41% 1.27% 1.74% 1.01% 1.00% 1.03% 1.57% 0.98% 0.76% 0.63%
North America N/A 0.42% 0.28% 0.38% 0.39% 0.63% 0.48% 0.40% 0.47% 0.69% 0.38% 0.64% 0.61%
Oceania N/A 7.89% 2.93% 3.11% 8.77% 9.34% 5.89% 5.14% 4.25% 5.34% 4.40% 4.25% 4.01%
Total 0.39% 0.50% 0.43% 0.52% 0.87% 0.96% 0.84% 0.51% 0.61% 0.75% 0.76% 0.96% 0.91%
Diversity visas issued and adjustments of status[45]
Region DV-2019 DV-2018 DV-2017 DV-2016 DV-2015 DV-2014 DV-2013 DV-2012 DV-2011 DV-2010 DV-2009 DV-2008 DV-2007
Africa N/A N/A 19,211 20,706 19,686 22,703 23,607 13,582 24,015 24,745 24,648 22,960 N/A
Asia N/A N/A 7,650 8,898 7,570 8,500 9,785 6,481 9,167 8,824 7,759 7,335 N/A
Europe N/A N/A 20,516 15,207 19,811 18,904 17,296 13,093 16,378 16,083 14,241 14,788 N/A
Latin America N/A N/A 1,830 1,370 1,459 1,472 1,029 742 978 1,008 782 835 N/A
North America N/A N/A 3 5 7 2 16 3 2 13 1 5 N/A
Oceania N/A N/A 766 532 844 761 838 562 578 639 605 710 N/A
Total N/A N/A 49,976 46,718 49,377 52,342 52,571 34,463 51,118 51,312 48,036 46,633 N/A
Diversity visas issued and adjustments of status, by country and fiscal year[45]
Country or territory 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008
Afghanistan 144 192 28 95 59 43 25 66 46 32
Albania 2,436 1,506 1,910 1,571 994 528 965 1,645 2,033 2,057
Algeria 996 1,277 1,093 971 1,058 343 846 797 798 823
Andorra 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Angola 12 37 8 10 13 7 15 6 14 4
Antigua and Barbuda 1 0 4 6 6 0 1 6 1 0
Argentina 36 30 52 73 32 37 57 91 62 60
Armenia 1,566 1,000 1,556 1,272 903 644 1,013 1,001 950 837
Aruba 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 4 6
Australia 398 331 486 406 433 292 275 285 187 238
Austria 34 10 48 24 42 34 69 56 54 30
Azerbaijan 434 204 289 190 190 149 222 207 217 163
Bahamas 3 5 7 2 16 3 2 13 1 5
Bahrain 1 2 2 2 4 10 2 1 4 0
Bangladesh ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible 295 3,090 3,017 2,663 2,286
Barbados 2 0 6 8 0 4 6 14 3 2
Belarus 801 568 868 844 848 285 684 734 780 769
Belgium 42 13 34 24 39 47 26 54 39 32
Belize 3 0 0 1 12 1 8 3 5 7
Benin 237 282 193 182 230 82 220 223 198 183
Bhutan 7 9 1 7 8 4 4 0 5 7
Bolivia 10 24 23 26 33 28 30 76 53 79
Bosnia and Herzegovina 84 48 77 39 30 44 33 37 62 31
Botswana 3 1 4 2 1 0 5 9 0 10
Brunei 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 1
Bulgaria 540 614 834 1,026 965 456 653 571 753 1,093
Burkina Faso 138 132 122 120 223 103 117 109 92 117
Burundi 75 64 47 37 28 11 28 42 22 9
Cambodia 198 266 152 334 399 188 168 132 120 92
Cameroon 1,214 1,625 1,455 1,289 1,619 847 1,706 1,581 1,530 1,190
Cape Verde 2 0 12 2 7 0 10 0 8 0
Central African Republic 2 8 3 1 3 0 2 11 3 0
Chad 10 18 15 9 10 3 16 6 10 7
Chile 13 1 10 24 12 6 16 11 31 14
Comoros 1 0 0 0 1 0 2 5 2 1
Congo 42 50 49 55 47 12 45 34 20 43
Costa Rica 13 10 6 25 20 2 12 17 2 3
Croatia 27 22 30 41 20 34 20 29 36 18
Cuba 384 536 474 302 193 70 231 140 190 256
Curaçao 0 0 0 0 4 2 1 N/A N/A N/A
Cyprus 8 8 8 7 3 2 2 8 14 5
Czech Republic 20 28 38 41 30 23 34 42 37 81
Democratic Republic of the Congo 2,669 2,778 2,641 2,442 2,235 1,221 1,522 924 601 511
Denmark 21 14 17 21 20 17 17 34 12 23
Djibouti 32 33 18 13 18 8 18 9 11 15
Dominica 3 4 2 6 11 9 10 15 21 3
East Timor 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Ecuador ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible 113
Egypt 3,580 2,855 3,456 3,500 3,383 2,013 3,268 3,253 3,651 3,310
Equatorial Guinea 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 1
Eritrea 81 149 186 173 245 144 381 368 392 302
Estonia 13 10 21 17 23 12 21 13 16 19
Eswatini 0 5 0 0 0 1 3 0 2 0
Ethiopia 2,560 2,143 2,469 2,543 2,393 1,419 3,536 3,774 3,690 3,549
Fiji 214 130 185 218 254 174 174 232 291 313
Finland 29 22 29 16 25 35 40 34 22 9
France 258 211 346 326 228 186 275 272 241 308
French Polynesia 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0
Gabon 13 9 12 18 6 10 7 7 5 18
Gambia 15 6 13 7 11 11 14 15 26 7
Georgia 548 368 507 345 411 293 461 441 360 284
Germany 284 293 535 497 584 595 860 964 910 817
Ghana 803 432 526 1,460 1,895 1,689 2,460 2,660 1,912 1,868
Greece 96 54 98 79 54 30 42 43 76 84
Grenada 6 1 2 6 1 7 2 4 1 1
Guadeloupe 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2
Guatemala 13 9 20 44 ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible 30
Guinea 205 293 262 264 257 113 185 268 86 109
Guinea-Bissau 1 0 2 0 7 0 1 0 0 0
Guyana 2 4 14 6 16 7 30 32 19 7
Honduras 30 26 31 38 24 23 26 26 10 14
Hong Kong 18 55 34 46 40 10 27 23 32 48
Hungary 83 79 121 103 112 80 125 65 138 82
Iceland 9 1 11 10 15 15 13 30 9 4
Indonesia 41 45 44 68 66 100 89 122 122 156
Iran 2,106 2,788 2,661 2,386 3,802 2,428 2,023 1,854 1,117 841
Iraq 150 146 23 49 66 36 57 37 50 88
Ireland 31 36 50 44 52 76 87 61 51 51
Israel 34 35 20 58 74 45 41 30 43 47
Italy 244 194 289 282 157 207 186 167 161 128
Ivory Coast 442 510 377 376 325 156 297 230 215 194
Japan 117 194 143 269 287 216 177 199 207 282
Jordan 96 176 72 181 122 62 87 72 95 25
Kazakhstan 460 243 460 325 316 237 236 201 200 172
Kenya 1,014 1,116 903 1,216 1,281 752 1,918 2,420 2,365 2,187
Kiribati 0 3 3 0 0 2 0 0 2 2
Kosovo 318 164 146 95 126 71 83 91 50 2
Kuwait 45 59 29 58 66 31 25 29 10 22
Kyrgyzstan 223 135 286 235 189 182 147 130 122 132
Laos 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 3 1 0
Latvia 22 31 30 57 57 22 70 36 41 19
Lebanon 41 72 52 58 87 94 56 46 83 77
Lesotho 0 0 0 3 0 4 0 1 0 0
Liberia 997 1,553 1,744 1,754 1,231 786 1,003 848 831 580
Libya 115 127 72 51 82 60 44 70 56 23
Liechtenstein 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0
Lithuania 96 91 167 156 141 129 167 133 106 128
Luxembourg 2 0 0 0 3 3 2 0 0 3
Macau 1 8 17 3 4 6 2 8 3 11
Macedonia 235 206 263 183 148 68 177 150 205 219
Madagascar 2 29 9 17 23 3 17 15 27 13
Malawi 10 0 11 15 16 1 13 17 13 20
Malaysia 30 48 14 38 20 27 48 41 30 39
Mali 15 39 23 21 29 20 23 38 43 34
Malta 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 5 0 0
Marshall Islands 0 0 0 1 0 4 0 0 0 0
Martinique 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 4
Mauritania 13 6 6 0 7 3 12 2 8 3
Mauritius 2 11 16 6 4 7 24 20 21 22
Moldova 1,369 1,189 1,566 1,211 906 684 582 399 273 279
Monaco 0 0 0 4 0 0 0 0 0 1
Mongolia 97 157 55 79 116 91 209 108 129 199
Montenegro 13 7 6 11 11 5 4 11 4 8
Morocco 1,080 1,115 912 864 894 376 987 1,782 2,004 2,129
Mozambique 3 0 1 5 0 2 0 3 1 0
Myanmar 148 140 88 200 267 197 253 282 371 113
Namibia 5 3 7 0 7 2 4 0 10 0
Nauru 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 0 0 0
Nepal 3,477 3,247 3,370 3,504 3,377 1,953 2,017 1,936 1,615 2,073
Netherlands 31 40 46 71 35 61 52 80 103 68
Netherlands Antilles N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 0 1 12 3
New Caledonia 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
New Zealand 127 66 149 132 131 87 109 80 84 117
Nicaragua 3 5 4 2 28 7 22 20 26 14
Niger 6 15 15 18 18 3 20 20 21 42
Nigeria ineligible ineligible ineligible 2,467 3,274 1,887 2,810 2,834 3,275 3,425
Norfolk Island 0 0 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Northern Ireland 4 6 15 18 14 15 17 10 13 3
Norway 9 3 4 0 16 9 12 12 11 10
Oman 6 4 1 2 1 2 0 2 1 5
Palau 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 0 0
Panama 0 1 5 7 5 7 5 17 9 5
Papua New Guinea 1 0 1 2 9 0 1 8 12 2
Paraguay 2 2 2 1 4 6 4 17 3 5
Poland 287 327 412 500 829 ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible ineligible
Portugal 15 11 29 27 20 16 17 9 16 12
Qatar 9 16 15 15 14 3 0 0 0 1
Réunion 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Romania 321 342 539 498 423 589 482 366 343 876
Russia 1,812 1,401 2,028 1,928 1,680 1,096 1,552 1,095 ineligible ineligible
Rwanda 161 242 199 139 158 43 64 65 32 44
Saint Kitts and Nevis 0 0 1 0 5 3 0 2 2 2
Saint Lucia 10 1 5 15 9 1 9 7 4 2
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 0 2 3 5 9 1 4 5 3 1
Samoa 0 0 0 0 0 2 4 9 2 11
Saudi Arabia 111 124 89 109 88 56 41 34 37 29
Senegal 98 139 104 109 91 51 128 128 163 104
Serbia 314 213 216 206 171 120 156 158 211 351
Seychelles 0 0 3 0 0 1 0 0 3 0
Sierra Leone 340 383 354 449 719 287 317 314 547 438
Singapore 9 12 2 32 6 14 12 11 14 21
Sint Maarten 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 N/A N/A N/A
Slovakia 31 26 44 36 36 17 37 43 45 67
Slovenia 12 8 5 1 4 2 2 5 7 6
Somalia 56 104 59 46 78 28 52 71 70 40
South Africa 215 182 197 217 319 225 309 303 301 235
South Sudan 6 11 1 0 0 0 0 N/A N/A N/A
Spain 108 101 183 183 95 75 86 80 75 56
Sri Lanka 160 324 201 301 296 217 336 441 548 466
Sudan 1,174 1,833 1,191 965 436 308 569 557 592 502
Suriname 0 2 2 4 3 1 0 3 1 2
Sweden 53 46 48 35 62 62 43 54 46 50
Switzerland 35 31 56 61 40 50 69 79 96 71
Syria 128 164 134 138 91 72 67 37 53 40
Taiwan 160 167 103 215 160 158 214 231 251 275
Tajikistan 419 239 339 248 209 152 182 121 80 66
Tanzania 46 32 60 28 51 62 81 65 137 72
Thailand 19 31 26 19 31 22 36 32 49 45
Togo 504 688 547 565 514 281 526 507 483 469
Tonga 24 1 15 2 11 1 9 22 27 27
Trinidad and Tobago 17 20 53 62 45 43 53 103 76 48
Tunisia 63 100 38 40 49 26 42 68 53 43
Turkey 1,386 796 1,245 1,084 712 899 993 1,058 1,041 972
Turkmenistan 93 75 105 106 70 72 85 77 59 78
Tuvalu 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Uganda 92 166 171 184 204 111 211 158 170 152
Ukraine 2,040 1,787 1,313 1,770 1,844 1,439 1,676 1,807 1,714 1,914
United Arab Emirates 31 28 40 36 40 41 22 5 11 3
Uruguay 8 8 5 9 1 3 4 8 7 12
Uzbekistan 3,199 2,378 2,524 3,032 3,385 3,212 3,596 3,356 2,388 2,274
Vanuatu 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Venezuela 1,274 684 735 802 560 476 448 391 253 155
Yemen 267 397 171 200 195 66 40 33 51 22
Zambia 17 20 33 18 39 18 48 41 38 65
Zimbabwe 44 85 47 32 68 42 89 65 96 47

Fraud

There is no charge to enter the Diversity Visa lottery, and the only way to do so is by completing and sending the electronic form available at the U.S. Department of State website during the registration period. However, there are numerous companies and websites that charge a fee in order to complete the form for the applicant. The Department of State and the Federal Trade Commission have warned that some of these businesses falsely claim to increase someone's chances of winning the lottery, or that they are affiliated with the U.S. government.[52]

There have also been numerous cases of fraudulent emails and letters which falsely claim to have been sent by the Department of State and that the recipient has been granted a Permanent Resident Card. These messages prompt the recipients to transfer a "visa processing fee" as a prerequisite for obtaining a "guaranteed" green card. The messages are sometimes sent to people who never participated in the lottery and can look trustworthy as they contain the recipient's exact name and contact details and what appears to be a legal notice.

The Department of State has issued a warning against the scammers. It notes that any email claiming the recipient to be a winner of the lottery is fake because the Department has never notified and will not notify winners by email. The Department has urged recipients of such messages to notify the Internet Crime Complaint Center about the scam.[53]

The office of inspector general has identified multiple problems with DV lottery in several countries, including Ukraine, Ghana, Albania in embassy inspection reports.[54][55][56]

According to testimony from Stephen A. Edson before the House Judiciary Committee, "in Bangladesh, for example, one agent is reported to have enrolled an entire phone book so that he could then either extort money from winning applicants who had never entered the program to begin with or sell their winning slots to others."[57]

Impact

Economic

According to Dartmouth economist Ethan Lewis, ending the diversity lottery program would likely have an adverse economic impact on Americans.[why?][58]

There is no support in the economics for the assertion that immigrants suppress wages and take jobs from Americans; to the contrary, research by Lewis and several other economists of migration shows that diverse and low-skilled immigrants lift the wages of native-born workers, as those immigrants are less substitutable to native-born workers.[58] Charles Kenny, an economist at the Center for Global Development, noted that research by Harvard economist Alberto Alesina found that countries with a higher share of foreign-born populations tended to have more innovation and higher incomes.[59]

Security

In 2004, the State Department’s deputy inspector general warned that there were security risks to granting visas to winners from countries with ties to terrorism.[60] A 2007 Government Accountability Office report however found no evidence that recipients of diversity visas posed a threat.[60]

According to PolitiFact, "there is at least one documented example of an individual who migrated through the diversity visa system and was later arrested on terrorism-related charges. But it is unclear that the diversity lottery has historically been used as a strategic entry point for terrorists."[61]

The uncle of Akayed Ullah, the man who set off a bomb on a New York City subway platform in 2017, won a diversity lottery, which enabled him to bring his nephew to the United States under the family reunification provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965.[62]

Experts on immigration note that the chances of winning the lottery are low and those who do win the lottery still have to undergo background checks and vetting, which makes the diversity lottery program a poor choice for immigrants considering launching terrorist attacks in the United States.[61]

According to the Cato Institute, immigrants from the countries with the highest percentage of diversity visas have vastly lower incarceration rates than native-born Americans.[63]

External links

References

  1. ^ "The Irish Roots of the Diversity Visa Lottery". Politico.com. Retrieved 5 November 2017.
  2. ^ Alvarez, Priscilla. "The Diversity Visa Program Was Created to Help Irish Immigrants". Theatlantic.com. Retrieved 5 November 2017.
  3. ^ "Green card lottery invented to help the Irish - under Trump, its luck may have run out". Independent.ie. Retrieved 5 November 2017.
  4. ^ "Seeking reform in an era of walls, bars and bans — Irish Echo". Irishecho.com. Retrieved 5 November 2017.
  5. ^ "What's Happened?". Irishabroad.com. Retrieved 5 November 2017.
  6. ^ a b DV Lottery Timeline, preceden.com; accessed November 5, 2017.
  7. ^ "Immigrants to get visas by lottery", The New York Times, March 1, 1989.
  8. ^ "For illegal Irish immigrants, a time to test that luck", The New York Times, March 17, 1989.
  9. ^ a b Linda Dowling Almeida Irish Immigrants in New York City, 1945–1995, Indiana University Press, 2001.
  10. ^ a b c "Was Diversity Visa program ..." @politifact. Retrieved 2017-11-03.
  11. ^ 9 FAM 502.6, U.S. Department of State; accessed November 5, 2017.
  12. ^ Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery (DV-1) Results, United States Department of State, October 19, 1994.
  13. ^ Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery (DV-96) Results, United States Department of State.
  14. ^ Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery (DV-97) Results, United States Department of State, September 13, 1996.
  15. ^ Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery (DV-98) Results, United States Department of State, September 10, 1997.
  16. ^ Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery (DV-99) Results, United States Department of State, May 6, 1998.
  17. ^ Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery (DV-2000) Results, United States Department of State, May 24, 1999.
  18. ^ a b c d e f Instructions for the 2017 Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (DV-2017), United States Department of State.
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  20. ^ Instructions for the 2012 Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (DV-2012), United States Department of State; accessed November 5, 2017.
  21. ^ "I'm a White Immigrant and I Benefited From a Racist Visa Lottery". Time.com. Retrieved 5 November 2017.
  22. ^ Jamieson, Amber (May 2, 2017). "A one in a million chance at a better life: will the US green card lottery survive?". Theguardian.com.
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  30. ^ VOA News Archived November 3, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
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  33. ^ "NYC terror attack: Sayfullo Saipov was here on diversity visa, Trump says. What is that?". USA Today. Retrieved November 5, 2017.
  34. ^ Mueller, Benjamin; Rashbaum, William K.; Baker, Al (31 October 2017). "Terror Attack Kills 8 and Injures 11 in Manhattan". Nytimes.com. Retrieved 5 November 2017.
  35. ^ Naylor, Brian. "FACT CHECK: Trump Points Blame At Chuck Schumer After N.Y. Terror Attack". NPR.
  36. ^ Blanco, Octavio; Kopan, Tal. "Trump's merit-based immigration system: Who would get in?".
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  38. ^ Tal Kopan (November 1, 2017). "What is the Diversity Visa lottery?". CNN.
  39. ^ Hawkins, Derek; Schmidt, Samantha; Lac, J. Freedom du (1 November 2017). "'A Chuck Schumer beauty': Trump calls for end to Diversity Visa program". Washington Post.
  40. ^ Miriam Valverde (November 2, 2017). "Diversity visa applicants are vetted, despite contrary claim from White House press secretary". PolitiFact.
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