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Diversity Visa: 2012 Lottery Season

September 20, 2010

The U.S. Embassy announces the start of the 2012 Diversity Visa (DV) lottery season and encourages Zambians to pay particular attention to new DV procedures.

The 2012 DV lottery entry season runs from October 5, 2010 to November 3, 2010.  New this year, the DV application process is fully electronic.  Visit www.dvlottery.state.gov for full instructions on the 2012 DV application process.  Due to high demand toward the end of the entry period, the U.S. Embassy encourages all interested individuals to submit their entries early.

The DV program presents an opportunity for Zambians to contribute to the diversity of the United States and immigrate without pre-existing family ties or a petition.  Minimum qualifications include a high school diploma, or at least two years working in an occupation requiring at least two years of training.  A guide to such occupations is available at http://travel.state.gov/visa/immigrants/types/types_1319.html.

Because the DV lottery entry process is computerized, entrants must be fully prepared to complete their application, including photo upload, at one sitting.  It is not possible to save the form.  Those submitting more than one entry will be disqualified, but an individual and spouse each meeting the minimum requirements may submit separate entries listing each other and all unmarried children under age 21, even if they will not immigrate with the principal applicant.

A confirmation sheet will appear after successful submission of an entry online, which applicants must print and keep in order to check the status of their DV entry in June 2011.  DV lottery winners must still apply, and qualify for, an immigrant visa.  After June 2011, the U.S. Department of State will email DV lottery winners to instruct them to check the www.dvlottery.state.gov website for visa interview scheduling information.  Non-winners will not be notified.  The Embassy does not have a list of winners.

Apart from an email to winners, which will only notify them to check the www.dvlottery.state.gov website for instructions on scheduling a visa interview, the U.S. government will not send any letter or email regarding the DV lottery.  Those receiving emails requesting payment should treat them as fraudulent and report the messages to www.econsumer.gov.  FY2011 lottery winners are the last to have received a paper letter.

No fee is payable at any stage of the DV process.  Only those selected for an immigrant visa interview and their immediate family members will pay a fee at the Embassy cashier and receive a receipt.  Emails or websites asking for fee payment are fraudulent.  For more information on how to protect yourself from DV fraud, visit http://travel.state.gov/visa/immigrants/types/types_1749.html.

2011 DV lottery winners have already been notified and given immigrant visa application and interview scheduling instructions.  2011 winners must receive their visas by September 30, 2011 or enter the lottery anew.  Immigrant visa recipients must immigrate within six months of visa receipt.