With barely one month to go to the official end of the DV 2021 program, questions continue to be asked by 2021 hopefuls regarding the likelihood of them being scheduled for interview.
We’ve discussed this preoccupation several times, but I thought it wise to reiterate our responses as the inquiries persist.
Basis for our responses
The U.S. Immigration Act of 1990 which established the DV Program ‘restricts’ the program to the U.S. fiscal year. (This is echoed in the DV Program Instructions every year.)
The fiscal year runs from October 1 of one year to September 30 of the following. Within a month’s time, the 2021 Fiscal year will official end. And along with it, the DV 2021 program.
So how likely is it that DV 2021 selectees yet to be scheduled will finally get an interview?
As of the time of writing this article, less than 20,000 of the 55,000 visas allotted for DV 2021 have been issued. Meaning there are more than 35,000 visas outstanding.
Considering that it took the system (KCC and all functioning embassies) 11 months to issue about a third of the visas available, is it likely that the remaining two-thirds be issued in only one month?
Below are the answers to this question along with others that emanate from it which I’d like to draw your attention to in case you’re not already aware.
1. Will all Diversity visas allotted to DV 2021 be issued before the deadline?
No, unfortunately. The time left makes it impossible for 35,000 plus Diversity Visas needing to be issued to be by the September 30, 2021 deadline.
2. Will more interviews be scheduled and visas issued during the month of September.
Certainly! Up to and including September 30.
3. Who then will be the beneficiaries of the interviews yet to be scheduled/ the visas yet to be issued?
Just the lucky ones among those whose documents have been completely processed.
4. Do those with low cases numbers stand a better chance than those with higher ones?
No. Experience shows that case numbers do not matter in the way interviews are currently scheduled. There have been cases where higher case numbers in a region have been scheduled while low case numbers haven’t.
5. What can we expect in terms of volume of interviews during this final month?
I personally expect the month of September to be the month with the highest number of DV 2021 interviews. The system has done a remarkable job of expediting case processing in recent months. And I believe they’re going to exert their last effort seeing that the deadline is almost at hand.
6. What options do DV 2021 selectees still have?
This would depend on the stage at which the selectee currently finds himself/herself.
– One needs to submit his/her required documents in addition to their DS 260 to be considered for interview. Considering that regulation, hardly anything can be done for those who only sent in their DS 260 but not their required documents.
– Those on the other hand who submitted both DS 260 and required documents and have been notified that they are set for interview, should simply wait – and perhaps pray. There’s nothing more that they can actually do.
– For those who have submitted their required documents in addition to their DS-260, but have not received any such assurance of being qualified as far as documents are concerned, this is the final opportunity to contact KCC regarding the status of their documents.
If you’re in such a situation, email KCC to find out if they received your documents and are satisfied with them. This action on your part may turn out to be a wake up call to KCC which may play out in your favor by inciting KCC to ascertain the status of your documents and consequently initiate the processing of your case.
7. Is scheduling still possible with the time left?
Under normal circumstances, interview notifications are sent out six to nine weeks to the interview date. But these are not normal circumstances. Of recent, selectees have received interview notification letters only nine days to their interview. So don’t be reluctant or lose hope.
This is one of the reasons why I am hopeful that September will see many yet-to-process 2021 cases being handled.
8. Will the end of September be the end of all things ‘2021?
Most likely not! At the end of September, those who will not be interviewed eventually may have the chance of benefiting from ongoing lawsuits in favor of 2021 selectees.
As was the case recently with DV 2020, a number of visas – 9095 to be precise – was set aside and will be subsequently issued in favor of 2020 selectees. It is very likely that such gesture will be repeated for DV 2021.
Though the number of visas to be set aside is yet to be known. That number will still not serve all remaining selectees. What it can and will do will be to allow a number of them – who would have otherwise been denied – to eventually achieve their American dream even though it may take some time.
A number of very lucky selectees will receive a pleasant unexpected surprise at some point in this month.
We can not say who that’s going to be. But what we can say is, to increase your chances of being in that number, it is important to act accordingly – and expect the best. That may make all the difference.
And when the deadline shall have come and gone, the justice system may still provide a beacon of hope to those not served within the legally established time frame. Though it may tarry for some and eventually not materialize for others, better keep hope alive.
This in no way suggests that all 2021 selectees who are yet to be scheduled for interview will eventually be.
But after all shall have been said and done, if luck was not on your side, then remember that it was said from the onset that “selection does not guarantee that you will receive a visa”.
With that, life must go on!