(This is an excerpt of a press release by the U.S. Department of State)
The 2014 Diversity Visa Program (DV-2014) opens at noon, Eastern Daylight Time, Tuesday, October 2, 2012, and will close at noon, EDT, Saturday, November 3, 2012. Applicants must submit entries electronically during this registration period using the electronic DV entry form (E-DV) at www.dvlottery.state.gov. Paper entries will not be accepted. We strongly encourage applicants not to wait until the last week of the registration period to enter. Heavy demand may result in website delays. No entries will be accepted after noon, EDT, on November 3, 2012.
The congressionally mandated Diversity Immigrant Visa Program is administered on an annual basis by the Department of State and conducted under the terms of Section 203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Section 131 of the Immigration Act of 1990 (Pub. L. 101-649) amended INA 203 and provides for a class of immigrants known as “diversity immigrants.” Section 203(c) of the INA provides a maximum of 55,000 Diversity Visas each fiscal year to be made available to persons from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. Fifty-five thousand immigrant visas are set aside for DV immigrants; however, since DV-1999, Congress has reserved 5,000 visas from this annual allocation to be made available for use under the Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act (NACARA).
The annual DV program makes visas available to persons meeting the simple, but strict, eligibility requirements. A computer-generated, random drawing chooses selectees for Diversity Visas. The visas are distributed among six geographic regions, with a greater number of visas going to regions with lower rates of immigration, and with no visas going to nationals of countries sending more than 50,000 immigrants to the United States over the period of the past five years. No single country may receive more than seven percent of the available Diversity Visas in any one year.
Persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR, and Taiwan are eligible.