There are only a few days left to register for the calendar year 2013 Green Card Lottery (“DV-2015”) before registration closes at noon EST on November 2. Registrants should not wait until the last day (or two) to apply because State Department servers are likely to be overloaded with a flood of last minute applications.
Ineligible countries (and islands) for this year’s lottery are: Anguilla, Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland born), Columbia, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Great Britain, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Montserrat, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Pitcairn, South Korea, St. Helena, Turks And Caicos Islands, United Kingdom (Except Northern Ireland), Vietnam are all ineligible. Persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR, and Taiwan are eligible. For the first time, natives of Nigeria are not eligible to enter this year’s lottery.
Applicants have two options. 1) They can register themselves for free at the official U.S. government website at: http://travel.state.gov/visa/immigrants/types/types_1322.html or, 2) they can use a paid green card lottery service agent. In most cases, self-registration is easy enough for the majority of applicants.
But the advantages of using a green card lottery service provider are several fold: First, there is a peace of mind that comes from paying a third party to review the application and photos for errors. Second, there is the convenience of being notified if you win. (Top lottery services notify their winners by telephone and email.) Third, some services offer some form of legal assistance for winners. Finally, most commercial lottery services offer airfare to the United States for winners and their families for an additional fee that is much lower than the cost of the tickets. And it is surprisingly easy for an applicant to lose their official confirmation number since there is a six month gap between registering for the lottery and electronic status checking beginning May 1, 2014. Services keep these numbers safe.
DV-2015 applicants can register with an ethical (paid) green card lottery service here.
Official instructions for entrants are available on the official U.S. government website, or you can download the free edition of Win the Green Card Lottery! (with chapters 1-3 only) at myGreencard.com. The COMPLETE edition of the book is available for $9.99 USD on Google Play. The complete (paid) version has detailed residential and personal requirements, two chapters for winners, a glossary of immigration terms, a full index, and 20+ tips designed to steer applicants and winners away from common pitfalls that can cost an applicant his or her visa. Buying this book or any other book, is not necessary to enter the lottery or pass your interview if you win.