The Diversity Immigrant Visa program—a.k.a. the green card lottery—is a government lottery program for obtaining U.S. Permanent Residence (green card). The program makes 50,000 visas available yearly to applicants from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States and with specific education qualifications. It provides an inexpensive and relatively simple path to a green card, without needing sponsorship from a U.S. employer or family.