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Suing for immigration FRAUD

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  • Suing for immigration FRAUD

    Hi everybody,

    Recently, I found a person selling his services as an "immigration helper" (note: he is not a lawyer, but works with a lawyer). This person claimed to help people to immigrate to the U.S. by filing an employment-based petition through his contact at a U.S. government agency (i.e. an I-140 that says the agency wants to hire me). I am not going to mention his name or the agency for obvious reasons. For his services, the immigration helper required a payment of several thousand dollars. However, he signed a contract saying that in case the petition is denied, part of the money will be refunded.

    After the payment has been made, the immigration helper indeed filed the immigration documents (I have the receipt notifications). However, there was a subsequent request for additional evidence (RFE), to which we responded, and the case was eventually denied. That person promised to gather more documents, address the issues in the denial, and re-file the case. However, I have no evidence that he has done something. A few weeks earlier, he stopped responding to phone calls and e-mail.

    Now, my question is: since I have a written contract signed by him (although I don't know if it meets the legal definition of contract), as well as a copy of my payment check and the notices sent by USCIS, is it possible to sue that person to get the refund he promised? It'd be something like breach of contract or misrepresentation. If I can't sue, at least I'd like to report this "helper" to USCIS, FBI or whatever enforcement authority.

    I am sure many people have been victims of immigration scams, so could somebody please let me know what my options are? Any input is appreciated.

    Thanks
    Manny

  • #2
    Hi everybody,

    Recently, I found a person selling his services as an "immigration helper" (note: he is not a lawyer, but works with a lawyer). This person claimed to help people to immigrate to the U.S. by filing an employment-based petition through his contact at a U.S. government agency (i.e. an I-140 that says the agency wants to hire me). I am not going to mention his name or the agency for obvious reasons. For his services, the immigration helper required a payment of several thousand dollars. However, he signed a contract saying that in case the petition is denied, part of the money will be refunded.

    After the payment has been made, the immigration helper indeed filed the immigration documents (I have the receipt notifications). However, there was a subsequent request for additional evidence (RFE), to which we responded, and the case was eventually denied. That person promised to gather more documents, address the issues in the denial, and re-file the case. However, I have no evidence that he has done something. A few weeks earlier, he stopped responding to phone calls and e-mail.

    Now, my question is: since I have a written contract signed by him (although I don't know if it meets the legal definition of contract), as well as a copy of my payment check and the notices sent by USCIS, is it possible to sue that person to get the refund he promised? It'd be something like breach of contract or misrepresentation. If I can't sue, at least I'd like to report this "helper" to USCIS, FBI or whatever enforcement authority.

    I am sure many people have been victims of immigration scams, so could somebody please let me know what my options are? Any input is appreciated.

    Thanks
    Manny

    Comment


    • #3
      Yes, you can bring this unscrupulous guy to the attention of Federal Agencies.
      You can also file the "grievance" petition with local Grivance Committee (wherever he is licensed to practice the law).
      I encourage you to do the both.

      Best Regards,
      IE

      Comment


      • #4
        Antifascist1, what is a "Grivance Committee"? How do I find it?

        I know that I can report to Federal Agencies... The question is how--who do I write to, what the letter should say, the specifics.

        Still, can I attempt to sue for breach of contract? I am assuming I'll have to go to a business litigation lawyer, not immigration.

        Thanks for your reply.

        Comment


        • #5
          Every attorney is registered with local BAR.
          Contact the "Grievance Committtee" under the jurisdiction where your attorney practices.
          If you tell me what State and what City your attorney practices in, I can help you to locate the proper Committee.
          Also, contact the DA (District Attorney) and the Immigration Office in the area where he practices.
          Give them a FACTUAL information about what has taken place.
          You may need an Attorney who can help you to do that.

          Good Luck,
          IE

          Comment


          • #6
            If he's not an attorney, filing with the state bar won't result in much, I'm afraid.

            State Ombudsman could look into this as an unlawful practice of law, perhaps.
            The above is simply an opinion. Your mileage may vary. For immigration issues, please consult an immigration attorney.

            Comment


            • #7
              OP mentioned the "person who works with attorney".

              If that person works as paralegal within the Law Office, then the Griavance can be filed against the Law Office (it's not about "Ombudsman", but State Attorney Griavance Committee that investigates the complaints of unethical and unlawful conduct by Attorneys).

              Comment



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