How to Apply for a Green Card
Participation in the annual DV Lottery is basically free of charge, and all eligible persons can register for it on the website of the U.S. Department of State. However, what many do not know is: In every lottery up to 40 % of all participants are disqualified because of formal or deadline errors in their application!
The admission or rejection of applications for the Diversity Visa Lottery is an electronic process, but participants are not informed about the outcome. Whether the application will end up in the lottery or not won’t be communicated.
However, the Green Card service agency The American Dream guarantees your participation in the official DV Lottery!
Each application is individually checked by state-approved emigration consultants and is submitted to the US authorities in due form and time.
With their expert knowledge, our team has already accompanied more than 21,000 Green Card winners on their way to the USA!
When Application will Start?
The dates you can register for the DV Lottery change each year. Registration for the 2025 DV Lottery is from October 4, 2023 to November 7, 2023 at 12 noon ET.
1. Are you eligible to apply?
U.S. immigration laws provide a variety of ways for people to apply for a Green Card. The eligibility requirements may vary depending on the immigrant category you are applying under. Go to our Green Card Eligibility Categories page to see all the possible categories you can apply under and what the eligibility requirements are.
Being Sponsored for a Green Card
Most people who apply for a Green Card will need to complete at least two forms—an immigrant petition and a Green Card application (Form I-485). Someone else usually must file the petition for you (often referred to as sponsoring or petitioning for you), although you may be eligible to file for yourself in some cases. Here are the most common forms:
2. Are you inside or outside the United States?
If you are eligible to apply for a Green Card, you then need to determine which process to use – adjustment of status or consular processing.
DV Entrant Status Check
2024 Entrant Status Check
DV-2024 Entrants may enter their confirmation information through the link below starting at noon (EDT) on May 6, 2023. The DV-2024 registration period opens on October 5, 2022, and closes on November 8, 2022 12:00 PM EST. DV-2024 Entrants should keep their confirmation number until at least September 30, 2024.
2023 Entrant Status Check
DV-2023 Entrants have until September 30, 2023 to check the status of their entry through this website. The DV-2023 registration period was from October 6, 2021, until November 9, 2021.
Click the link below to check DV-2024 and DV-2023 Entrant Status.
PAPERWORK REDUCTION ACT: Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 30 minutes per response, including time required for searching existing data sources, gathering the necessary documentation, providing the information and/or documents required, and reviewing the final collection. You do not have to supply this information unless this collection displays a currently valid OMB control number. If you have comments on the accuracy of this burden estimate and/or recommendations for reducing it, please send them to: PRA_BurdenComments@state.gov.
CONFIDENTIALITY STATEMENT: INA Section 222(f) provides that visa issuance and refusal records shall be confidential and shall be used only for the formulation, amendment, administration, or enforcement of the immigration, nationality, and other laws of the United States. Certified copies of visa records may be made available to a court which certifies that the information contained in such records is needed in a case pending before the court.
General Application Process
The steps you must take to apply for a Green Card will vary depending on your individual situation. However, here is the general application process that most applicants will go through:
- Someone usually must file an immigrant petition for you (often referred to as sponsoring or petitioning for you). In some cases, you may be eligible to file for yourself.
- After USCIS approves the immigrant petition, and there is a visa available in your category, you file either a Green Card application with USCIS or a visa application with the U.S. Department of State.
- You go to a biometrics appointment to provide fingerprints, photos, and a signature.
- You go to an interview.
- You receive a decision on your application.
If Your Green Card Application Is Pending with USCIS
If you already submitted a Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, and your case is pending with USCIS, go to our While Your Green Card Application Is Pending with USCIS page for more information on checking your case status, updating your address, and making appointments with USCIS.
How to Track Delivery of Your Green Card, Employment Authorization Document (EAD), and Travel Document
- Sign up for a Case Status Online account to get automatic case updates, including your U.S. Postal Service (USPS) tracking number when we mail your card or travel document.
- Register for Informed Delivery through USPS to get daily images of mail being sent to you. With Informed Delivery, you can:
- Automatically track the packages you’re expecting
- Set up email and text alerts
- Enter USPS Delivery Instructions™ for your mail carrier
If your USPS tracking information shows your package was delivered but you have not received it, contact your local post office immediately. Remember, we will mail your card or travel document to the address you provided on your application (unless you told us to mail it your representative on Form G-28, Notice of Entry or Appearance as Attorney or Accredited Representative).
If your mailing address changes after you file your application, you must update your address with USCIS and USPS as soon as possible. We recommend you use the USPS Look Up a ZIP Code tool to ensure that you give USCIS your full address using the standard abbreviations and formatting recognized by USPS.
If you don’t update your address promptly, your case could be delayed, your document(s) could get lost, and you may need to reapply and pay the fee again.
If You Already Have a Green Card
If you already have a Green Card, go to our After a Green Card is Granted page for more information on travel, renewing a card, and your rights and responsibilities as a Green Card holder.