I Won a Green Card.
If you have been lucky to have your name drawn in the visa lottery (DV lottery 2024), you are highly likely to face a crucial question: what should I do next?
The thing is that the highly prized message ‘you have been selected’ doesn’t mean you will receive a green card automatically. In fact, it’s just the beginning of a long way to the US permanent residency.
You might be surprised to know that at least half of the lucky winners fail to receive a dream card for different reasons. And one of the most common reasons is they don’t act as fast as possible to timely apply for a green card. Another reason is that overcome with joy and excitement, you might leave out some important details that will damage your chances to move to the US permanently.
Where to File Application for US Diversity Visa
The first thing you should start with is to decide where you are able to apply for a visa. If you are currently residing in the US on a non-immigrant visa, you are able to adjust your status and obtain a permanent residency card without leaving the country. The only thing you are required to do is just to file your application with a USCIS Center and wait to be invited for an interview at a local USCIS office.
Living in the US and submitting your application locally doesn’t increase your chances of a positive outcome.
Taking into consideration the backlogs caused by the pandemic restrictions, there can be long waiting periods for getting an interview to adjust your status. As a result, you could miss out on your chance for a green card.
However, not everyone can take advantage of the opportunity and apply for a green card to adjust status. You are entitled to use this procedure only if you're staying in the U.S. legally, that is, on a valid and unexpired visa (although, as usual there are always a few exceptions).
If you are thinking of changing your status, ACS Law Offices attorney could consult you on whether this is a viable option for you at the moment, based on your personal case.
If you're not living in the United States, you need to apply for your green card at a local U.S. embassy or consulate and attend your visa interview in your home country before moving to the United States.
Filling Out DS-260 Immigrant Visa Electronic Application
There is no specific time period within which you need to submit the DS-260 visa application to the US consular center. However, it is not a good idea to delay submitting it. As soon as 55 thousand immigrant visas are issued for green card lottery winners, no more visa applications will be accepted.
Submitting Supporting Documents
While the Kentucky Consular Center is processing your application forms, don’t waste time and start preparing the DV lottery documents required for you and your accompanying family members. The sooner you will get them ready, the sooner your interview will be scheduled. All the documents have to be translated into English by a certified translator. Your interview will be scheduled only when you present scanned copies of all required supporting documents, according to the guidelines from the Kentucky Consular Center.
Documents to be submitted
- birth certificates
- court and prison records
- military records
- police certificates
- photocopy of valid passport biographic data page
The list of civil and personal documents may vary from country to country, so it has to be checked out in the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you will apply.
Additional Documents to Be Submitted
- bank statement
- real estate appraisal
- employment records
Confirm Green Card Eligibility Before Your Visa Interview
The fees for your visa have to be paid at the embassy or consulate prior to your interview. Before you do this, make sure that you meet the eligibility criteria to apply for a green card, because the visa application fees are relatively high and will not be refunded if you are not granted a visa.
- First of all, applicants must meet the educational requirements for the visa and must not have criminal records that might render you ineligible for the visa.
- To qualify for the diversity lottery, you must have either graduated from high school or have two years of work experience. That needs to be done within the past five years in a field, which requires at least two years of training.
- The applicant also has to show some financial assets proving that they won't arrive in the US and become a burden for the government.
If you have any doubts about whether you are qualified for a DV visa, our experienced U.S. Immigration Attorneys are ready to advise you on a wide range of DV visa immigration issues.
Obtaining Medical Certificate
It is reasonable to arrange the medical checkup when you know the date of the interview. You need to do it only in special medical centers certified by the US government. The procedure also involves vaccination, the list of vaccination depends on your age group.
It should be noted that nowadays the US government doesn’t insist on getting Covid-19 vaccination for immigration purposes.
The medical certificate is required to make sure that you and your family members don’t have medical conditions that will prevent you from entering the country (certain psychic disorders, active form of TB, leprosy, and others).
The results of your medical checkup will be sealed in an envelope that you will have to hand over to the consul during the interview.
Attending Your Visa Interview
The interviews start in October and continue all the way until September of the next year. So you have to see the number that you have obtained. And the smaller the number is the sooner you might get your interview for a green card.
At the consular interview, you will pay the visa application fees on the spot. The consular officer will interview you, review your file, and determine whether you meet the requirements for the visa.
The main objective of the interview is to make sure that the people attending the interview are the same who have filed the application forms.
You will be asked standard dv lottery interview questions that require simple answers, your fingerprints will be
taken and checked with the database, the documents will be reviewed. It is advisable to attend the interview with
your spouse, especially if you got married after learning the DV lottery results.
In case your interview went well, you will be issued an immigrant visa by September 30. The visa is usually valid for six months since it was issued, so you must enter the U.S. before it expires and apply for a green card.
If you have any doubts whether you will be able to take care of all formalities, or you need help with submitting an application form for Green Card Lottery 2024, ACS Law Offices professionals will be happy to answer all your questions and provide assistance at any stage: preparing visa application documents, filling out application forms and attending an interview with an immigration officer.