Immigrating to the United States to live here permanently is a complex and important decision. This section provides information about visa types for immigrants.
In general, to apply for an immigrant visa, a foreign citizen must be sponsored by a U.S. citizen relative(s), U.S. lawful permanent resident, or by a prospective employer, and be the beneficiary of an approved petition. Therefore, a first step is filing a petition. After the immigrant petition has been approved by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), then the next step is preliminary processing for a visa with the Department of State, National Visa Center.
Unlike other immigrant types however, Diversity Visas (DV) do not require a U.S. sponsor, and therefore a petition is not needed. Visas provided under the Visa Lottery (DV) are drawn from countries with low rates of immigration to the U.S.