Texas is home to a large number of immigrants from Central and South America, and many need legal assistance as they assimilate to life in the U.S. and take steps towards permanent residency or naturalization. Unfortunately, many immigrants fall victim to a common scam or misrepresentation here in the U.S. based on legal assistance commonly found in their home countries.
In the U.S., a notary public is a person solely authorized by the state to witness the signing of forms and legal documents. However, in most Spanish-speaking countries, a "notario publico" is an individual that has earned the equivalent of a law degree and is also allowed to represent other people in government matters and in court. Immigrants in the U.S. often do not realize that businesses advertising themselves here as "notario publicos" serve vastly different functions as those back home.
Notario Fraud occurs when people licensed as Notary Publics in the U.S. attempt to pass themselves off as "notario publicos" that would be found in Latin America. They can scam trusting immigrants out of hard-earned wages and savings by misrepresenting the kinds of legal services they can provide. Immigrants and their families might pay hundreds, thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars to someone they believe is an attorney or has legal authority to represent them in legal matters in the United States.
The misrepresentation of "notario publicos" in the U.S. can lead to significant repercussions for innocent immigrants caught in their scam. Notario Fraud can lead to incorrect or incomplete immigration forms, missed immigration deadlines, delays of immigration interviews, missed court appearances, or false claims filed with the government. Victims of Notario Fraud often lose the opportunity to obtain permanent residency or naturalization, and can even face deportation or criminal charges due to false government filings.
In order to avoid becoming a victim of Notario Fraud, it is crucial to seek the legal services of an experienced, professional Immigration Law Attorney. Texas-based Christiansen Law Firm offers individuals and families exceptional legal services for all immigration matters, including immigrant visas, permanent residency and naturalization, marriage, adoption, or divorce. Christiansen Law Firm has extensive experience in Immigration Law, and can help navigate the complexities of immigration paperwork, court proceedings, and other legal needs. Contact Christiansen Law Firm at their Houston or San Antonio offices for more information or to request a free consultation.