Return to: Index of US State Department Press Statements || Electronic Research Collections Index || ERC Homepage

U.S. Department of State
96/09/13 Press Release
Office of the Spokesman

Office of the Spokesman

For Immediate Release                         September 13, 1996



The National Visa Center in Portsmouth, New Hampshire has registered the 
winners of the DV-97 diversity lottery.  The diversity lottery was 
conducted under the terms of  Section 203(c) of the Immigration and 
Nationality Act and makes available 55,000 permanent resident visas 
annually to persons from countries with low rates of immigration to the 
United States.  Approximately 100,000 applicants have been registered 
and notified and may now make an application for an immigrant visa.  
Since it is likely that some of the first 55,000 persons registered will 
not pursue their cases to visa issuance, this larger figure should 
insure that all DV-97 numbers will be used.

Applicants registered for the DV-97 program were selected at random from 
the approximately 6.5 million qualified entries received during the one-
month application period which ran from February 12, 1996 through 
midnight March 12, 1996.  An additional 1.1 million applications 
received (inside and outside the mail-in period) were disqualified for 
failing to properly follow directions.

The visas have been apportioned among six geographic regions with a 
maximum of 3,850 visas (7% of the 55,000 total) available to persons 
born in any single country.  During the visa interview, principal 
applicants must provide proof of a high school education or its 
equivalent, or show two years of work experience in an occupation that 
requires at least two years of training or experience within the past 
five years.

Those selected will need to act on their immigrant visa applications 
quickly.  Applicants should follow the instructions in their 
notification letter and must fully complete the information requested.  
Registrants living in the United States who wish to apply for adjustment 
of their status must contact the Immigration and Naturalization Service 
nearest to their place of residence.  Once the total 55,000 visa numbers 
have been used, the program for fiscal year 1997 will end. Selected 
applicants who do not receive visas by September 30, 1997 will derive no 
further benefit from their DV-97 registration.  Similarly, spouses and 
children accompanying or following to join DV-97 principals are only 
entitled to derivative DV status until September 30, 1997.

Only participants in the DV-97 program who were selected for further 
processing have been notified.  Those who have not received notification 
should assume their names were not selected.  The dates for next year‚s 
DV-98 lottery have not been announced.  We expect information concerning 
the DV-98 lottery will be available after November 1, 1996.  Interested 
individuals may check the Consular Affairs home page on the Internet at, or the automated fax service at (202) 647-3000 
(code 1103) for updates.
To the top of this page