Natives of Select Countries
The Department of State (DoS) selects eligible countries every year. You, your spouse, or your parents must have been born in one of those countries to apply.
+ High School Education
You must have completed the equivalent of a US grade 12 education.
OR 2 years of work experience
Those without a high school education equivalent are still eligible if they have 2 years of work experience in specific fields.
2019 Eligible Countries by Region:
You or your spouse must have been born in one of the countries below. Note that your current country of residence or citizenship is not relevant for the purpos of this application.
You may also be able to apply using your parent's country of birth, but only if they are from an eligible country and were not legal residents in the country of your birth at the time you were born.
High School Education
Green Card Lottery applicants are required to have a high school education or its equivalent. This is defined as “successful completion of a 12-year course of elementary and secondary education in the United States OR the successful completion in another country of a formal course of elementary and secondary education comparable to a high school education in the United States.”
Please note that only formal programs are accepted: correspondence programs, equivalency certificates, and other such programs would not be accepted.
If you do not have a high school education or equivalent, you can fulfill the education requirement by having 2 years of work experience.
Applicants without a high school education or its equivalent can still apply for the Green Card Lottery if they possess 2 years of work experience in a profession that requires 2 years or more of training.
You can see if your profession qualifies by searching on the O*Net Online website, finding your profession, and then checking the SVP (Specific Vocational Preparation) rating (usually at the bottom of the page). Professions with an SVP rating of 7.0 or higher qualify, provided you have 2 years of experience in them.