INA: ACT 203 - ALLOCATION OF IMMIGRANT VISAS
Sec. 203. [8 U.S.C. 1153]
- In general. - Except as provided in paragraph (2), aliens subject to the worldwide level specified in section 201 (e) for diversity immigrants shall be allotted visas each fiscal year as follows:
- Determination of preference immigration. - The Attorney General shall determine for the most recent previous 5-fiscal-year period for which data are available, the total number of aliens who are natives of each foreign state and who (i) were admitted or otherwise provided lawful permanent resident status (other than under this subsection) and (ii) were subject to the numerical limitations of section 201(a) (other than paragraph (3) thereof) or who were admitted or otherwise provided lawful permanent resident status as an immediate relative or other alien described in section 201(b)(2) .
- Identification of high-admission and low-admission regions and high-admission and low-admission states. - The Attorney General -
- shall identify -
- each region (each in this paragraph referred to as a "high- admission region") for which the total of the numbers determined under subparagraph (A) for states in the region is greater than 1/6 of the total of all such numbers, and
- each other region (each in this paragraph referred to as a "low- admission region"); and
- shall identify -
- each foreign state for which the number determined under subparagraph (A) is greater than 50,000 (each such state in this paragraph referred to as a "high-admission state"), and
- each other foreign state (each such state in this paragraph referred to as a "low-admission state").
- Determination of percentage of worldwide immigration attributable to high-admission regions. - The Attorney General shall determine the percentage of the total of the numbers determined under subparagraph (A) that are numbers for foreign states in high- admission regions.
- Determination of regional populations excluding high- admission states and ratios of populations of regions within low-admission regions and high-admission regions. - The Attorney General shall determine -
- based on available estimates for each region, the total population of each region not including the population of any high-admission state;
- for each low-admission region, the ratio of the population of the region determined under clause (i) to the total of the populations determined under such clause for all the low-admission regions; and
- for each high-admission region, the ratio of the population of the region determined under clause (i) to the total of the populations determined under such clause for all the high-admission regions.
- Distribution of visas. -
- No visas for natives of high-admission states.- The percentage of visas made available under this paragraph to natives of a high- admission state is 0.
- For low-admission states in low-admission regions. - Subject to clauses (iv) and (v), the percentage of visas made available under this paragraph to natives (other than natives of a high-admission state) in a low-admission region is the product of-
- the percentage determined under subparagraph (C), and
- the population ratio for that region determined under subparagraph (D)(ii).
- For low-admission states in high-admission regions. - Subject to clauses (iv) and (v), the percentage of visas made available under this paragraph to natives (other than natives of a high-admission state) in a high-admission region is the product of -
- 100 percent minus the percentage determined under subparagraph (C), and
- the population ratio for that region determined under subparagraph (D)(iii).
- Redistribution of unused visa numbers. - If the Secretary of State estimates that the number of immigrant visas to be issued to natives in any region for a fiscal year under this paragraph is less than the number of immigrant visas made available to such natives under this paragraph for the fiscal year, subject to clause (v), the excess visa numbers shall be made available to natives (other than natives of a high-admission state) of the other regions in proportion to the percentages otherwise specified in clauses (ii) and (iii).
- Limitation on visas for natives of a single foreign state. - The percentage of visas made available under this paragraph to natives of any single foreign state for any fiscal year shall not exceed 7 percent
- Region defined. - Only for purposes of administering the diversity program under this subsection, Northern Ireland shall be treated as a separate foreign state, each colony or other component or dependent area of a foreign state overseas from the foreign state shall be treated as part of the foreign state, and the areas described in each of the following clauses shall be considered to be a separate region: (i) Africa. (ii) Asia. (iii) Europe. (iv) North America (other than Mexico). (v) Oceania. (vi) South America, Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean.
- Requirement of education or work experience. - An alien is not eligible for a visa under this subsection unless the alien-
- has at least a high school education or its equivalent, or
- has, within 5 years of the date of application for a visa under this subsection, at least 2 years of work experience in an occupation which requires at least 2 years of training or experience.
- Maintenance of information. - The Secretary of State shall maintain information on the age, occupation, education level, and other relevant characteristics of immigrants issued visas under this subsection.
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