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Press Release

U.S. Diversity Immigrant Visa Program for 2008

The 2008 Diversity Visa Lottery began on October 4, 2006, and is scheduled to run through December 3, 2006. 

Applications for the 2008 Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery will be accepted between noon Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) (GMT-4), Wednesday, October 4, 2006 and noon Eastern Standard Time (EST) (GMT-5) Sunday, December 3, 2006.

Applicants may access the electronic Diversity Visa entry form at during the registration period.  Paper entries will not be accepted. Applicants are strongly encouraged 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 EST on December 3, 2006.

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 provides for a class of immigrants known as "diversity immigrants." Section 203(c) of the INA provides a maximum of up to 55,000 Diversity Visas (DV) each fiscal year to be made available to persons from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States.

The annual DV program makes permanent residence visas available to persons meeting the simple, but strict, eligibility requirements. A computer-generated random lottery drawing chooses selectees for diversity visas. The visas, however, 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. Within each region, no one country may receive more than seven percent of the available Diversity Visas in any one year.

To enter the lottery, you must meet either the education or work experience requirement of the DV program.

Education or Work Experience: You must have EITHER a high school education or its equivalent, defined as successful completion of a 12-year course of elementary and secondary education; OR two years of work experience within the past five years in an occupation requiring at least two years of training or experience to perform. For more information about qualifying work experience, see Frequently Asked Question #13 at

If you cannot meet these requirements, you should NOT submit an entry to the DV program.

Procedures for Submitting an Entry to DV-2008

The Department of State will only accept completed Electronic Diversity Visa Entry Forms submitted electronically at during the registration period.

All entries by an individual will be disqualified if more than ONE entry for that individual is received, regardless of who submitted the entry. You may prepare and submit your own entry, or have someone submit the entry for you.

The American Institute in Taiwan would like to warn Taiwan passport holders to be wary of web sites and emails offering assistance in registering for the lottery or notifying them that they have "won" a U.S. immigrant visa.  The only Web site where people may enter the lottery is  Many other Web sites may look like official U.S. government Web sites, offering registration assistance for a fee.  However, none of these Web sites are endorsed, recommended, or sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, and they have no affiliation with the U.S. government whatsoever.

The U.S. Department of State does not charge a fee for registration. People may enter the lottery for free when registering at  Other non-governmental Web sites may charge registration fees, but these are not paid to the U.S. government, and no fee is necessary when registering directly with the U.S. Department of State.

All winners of the lottery will be notified by a letter sent directly from the National Visa Center in the United States.  This letter will include an appointment time for an interview at AIT.  At no times are winners notified by e-mail or telephone, and winners are never asked to pay a fee in order to "accept a U.S. green card."  AIT advises anyone who has received notification that he or she has won the lottery to contact AIT immediately to confirm that the notification is genuine, before paying any fees.

People may enter the lottery only once per person.  There is no way for people to increase their chances of winning the lottery.  Using a non-AIT or non-Department of State registration service will not increase the chances of winning.  These outsides services have no influence on the results of the Diversity Lottery.

Taiwan passport holders who are interested in participating in the Diversity Lottery program are encouraged to visit official Web sites hosted by AIT ( and the U.S. Department of State ( 

Members of the public with questions about any potentially fraudulent communications are encouraged to contact AIT by email at