As many people are wanting to immigrate to the United States, other malevolent individuals tend to try to take advantage of this necessity. Since the immigration process is complex, many people try to seek for someone or some agency to help them. Unfortunately, the motives of some of these people or agencies are not to help them but rather to only gain money from them.
If you are one who is planning to immigrate or know someone who plans to, below are some of the most common types of immigration scams that you should look out for :
1. People who are not authorized to help you
These people come in many forms but the most common ones are the notarios or the notary publics. Outside US, these people are known as highly specialized lawyers but be wary that these people are not authorized to help you just because they say they are notarios.
2. Fake Government Websites
These websites will pretend that they are the official government websites. This is easy for you to check as fake government websites will lack a .gov in the end of their domain. If that is the case, do not make any transactions with the website as most likely, they will not help you.
3. Anyone who charges money for free government forms
The government will never charge you for any forms so if some individual who introduces himself/herself as an accredited representative but asks you to pay for a form, do not pay for it.
You will really want to take note of those because getting scammed will not only make you lose money, it will also have a detrimental effect on your immigration status, putting it in danger. This is because once you let yourself be scammed, you are risking yourself by filling out ingenuine forms, missing deadlines, and having incorrect information on your forms.
However, do not lose hope as there are people who can genuinely help you. You can look for an immigration lawyer or an accredited representative to help you with the immigration. They will charge you for fees but do not worry because these ones are accredited by the government and will not cause harm to your immigration and your money. Head over to ftc.gov/immigration to find out the authentic ones you can seek help for.
Also, help the government eliminate these scams by reporting to ftc.gov if ever you find one that matches the criteria mentioned above.
Have a fun, safe, and trouble-free immigration!