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Those seeking a green card should be aware of scams

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Many people who offer to help immigrants out with the immigration procedures they need to know are honest and capable of helping. However, there are people and organizations out there who may take advantage of an immigrant or entire family who is seeking a green card to stay in the United States. For immigrants for whom English is a second language, these scams may be hard to spot or realize until it is too late, putting a person’s or family’s immigration status at stake. Anyone in Maryland or elsewhere who is unsure of the process to get a green card may want to be aware of scams out there.

One scam recently led to the state having to reimburse immigrants who fell prey to the scheme. A man and his two organizations were accused of illegal practices pertaining to getting citizenship for immigrants. The state attorney general’s office set up a fund of $2.2 million to give back to those immigrants who lost money.

In one incident related to the fraudulent practice, a victim paid $18,000 for legal services related to getting a green card. That person was found to be eligible for the green card. However, because the organization didn't provide the legal help they said they would, the person missed out on the opportunity to get a legal green card.

When a scam has taken place related to a green card, it may be difficult for immigrants to come forward for fear of their own status and possible repercussions related to being scammed. For immigrants in Maryland, working hard for years to save money may have all been in vain if that money were to be lost in an immigration scam. It is vital for any immigrant seeking a green card to know their status and also know the legal steps that are to be taken to secure a green card so as to avoid falling victim to those who would take advantage of them.

Source: ny1.com, "Reimbursement Fund Set Up for Victims of Fraudulent Nonprofits", , July 21, 2014

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