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  • Posted on:  03 October 2019

8 Things an Immigration Agent May Not Tell You

People hoping to immigrate to the United States often decide to consult an Immigration Agent in their home country. It just seems like a good thing to do. While that may be true, it may not always be the best approach.

Here are 8 things your Immigration Agent may not tell you.

1. Immigration Agents, Immigration Consultants, and Notaries are not allowed to offer legal advice concerning client immigration plans. Question: Why would you ask from someone for help who is forbidden by law from providing the legal guidance you need?
2. Immigration Agents, Immigration Consultants, and Notaries are limited to translation assistance and helping their clients to complete application forms. The questions are all about the applicant. You already have the answers. Consulting a translator, if that is what you need, is much less expensive.
3. You do not need an Immigration Agent, Immigration Consultant, or Notary to obtain official immigration forms. All the documents and directions you need are available on the US State Department and USCIS websites.
4. Immigration Agents, Immigration Consultants, and Notaries advertised fees are lower than Attorney fees because they offer only limited services. Immigration Attorneys are committed to representing their clients throughout the entire process, including representation at immigration hearings. Immigration Agents, Immigration Consultants, and Notaries can only get their clients started.
5. The fees Immigration Agents, Immigration Consultants, and Notaries charge clients is only one way they make money. Because they are limited in the services they can provide, they make the bulk of their money from making introductions. They charge clients for presentations to accountants, Regional Centers, Immigration Attorneys, and other services. At the same time, they receive referral compensation from those services.
6. Immigration Agents, Immigration Consultants, and Notaries may ultimately cost clients more than dealing directly with an Immigration Attorney and will almost certainly cost you more than you expected. Each service rendered is an additional expense. It’s not that Immigration Agents, Immigration Consultants, and Notaries are unscrupulous (although some are). They function and prosper based on their conventional business model.
7. Immigration Agents, Immigration Consultants, and Notaries may not advise clients that they need an Immigration Attorney until they have made as much money as they can from client fees and referral kickbacks – and the client may be no closer to immigrating.
8. Immigration Agents, Immigration Consultants, and Notaries will rarely suggest that a client consider investing in a privately-owned business over which he has some control. Instead, they will encourage investor immigrants to invest in Regional Center programs where the client’s investment is at risk without his ability to manage that risk.

There is nothing inherently wrong with using Immigration Agents, Immigration Consultants, and Notaries – as long as you, as a client, understand the limitations of their services and how that fits with your immigration needs.

Our advice is simple: Be careful and cautious. The only shortcut to successful immigration is to do it right the first time. That’s why the only choice is to engage a qualified Immigration Attorney as your advisor and representative.

If you have questions, contact Dr. Gregory Finkelson and our Immigration Attorneys at ACS Law Offices. Our entire staff at American Corporate Services is prepared to assist you and show you how we can help to make your immigration dream come true.


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