Families who plan to immigrate to the United States often have a long road ahead of them. There are many steps that need to be completed and having the right guidance can make the process less complicated. Unfortunately, there are dishonest people out there who will try to take advantage of the situation.
The United States government has warned immigrants about these scammers who will do almost anything to get their hands on your money. Falling for an immigration scam could derail your family’s plans before you set foot on U.S. soil.
Identifying an immigration scam
The most common scams are conducted by people claiming to be from either U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) or U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). In other words, they are impersonating government officials in an attempt to get personal information and money from you.
The scammer will either email or call to inform you that one of the following unfortunate situations has occurred.
- You have violated U.S. Immigration policies
- You need to pay additional fees
- The forms you recently submitted are out of date
- Your paperwork is overdue
- You must pay an Immigration Bond
Should you hesitate or question the caller they will threaten you with arrest or deportation if you are already in the country.
What to do if you hear from a scammer
U.S. immigration officers want you to know that they will never call you to request money or personal information. If you receive a call like this, hang up. The caller will play on your fears to coerce you into cooperating. Don’t fall for their scam!
Instead, seek legal guidance to help you through the process. You should also report the scam here: https://reportfraud.ftc.gov/#/